Watch out, millennials, Gen Z is the new cool crowd! And more of them are growing up every day, the oldest members turning 22 in 2019. What does this mean for the restaurant industry? Well, teens, tweens, and young adults just hitting their 20s are earning money and are looking for ways and places to spend it.
Watching Their Wallets
Gen Z tends to be slightly stingier than millennials when it comes to spending big on a meal. Analysts attribute this to the Great Recession, which hit when Gen Z kids were sill young. Contrast that with millennials, who grew up in the aftermath of 9/11 and have made social consciousness one of the main themes of their spending habits. While many restaurants have already embraced policies that millennials popularized, such as ethically sourced ingredients, more and more establishments have started offering deals aimed at younger consumers looking to save.
They Want That Face to Face Connection
Gen Z is all about establishing personal, face-to-face connections with those around them, whether in work or personal relationships. This may seem counter-intuitive since they are “digital natives” and grew up immersed in technology and the internet, but with the rise of video conferencing applications such as FaceTime, Gen Z has veered away from the millennial tendency to hide behind screens and texting. The good news for restaurants is that Gen Z loves to eat out! In fact, the data shows that young people born after 1997 ate at restaurants 14.6 billion times last year and make up a whopping 25 percent of total traffic in the food service industry. It’s worth your while to learn their ways and how to please them.
Fast, Casual, and Digital
Like their older millennial counterparts, Gen Z kids love food delivery apps. They also share their older siblings’ short attention spans and prefer fast and casual dining rather than a luxurious sit-down meal. Find ways to invest in your food delivery service, especially on mobile apps, to tap into this growing customer base, and examine your menu to make sure you have those easy snacks Gen Z loves.
Contact Best Metropolitan Towel & Linen today for assistance with sourcing all your restaurant linen needs, and proven strategies to grow your customer base.