Marketing to Gen Z, Millennials

October 8, 2020

Survey reveals opportunities for the aesthetic practice to market to younger generations this holiday season.

There’s no way around it, 2020 definitely hasn’t held any punches. This year has brought an onslaught of earth-shattering events, including fires, hurricanes, and the ongoing battle of the COVID-19 pandemic.

So, it’s no wonder the younger generations are expressing the emotional impact this year has had and re-prioritizing that what they think is important coming into the holiday season.

Social content company, Fullscreen, surveyed 500 18 to 37 year olds in its proprietary, To Be Honest (TBH) panel, to understand how and why Generation Z and Millennials will be reinterpreting the holidays this year.

Emotionally, the effect of 2020 has been understandably polarizing.

With a roughly even split between negative (anxious, overwhelmed, sad) and positive (hopeful, optimistic, happy) options, the top two responses were anxious (43%) and Hopeful (41%).

Over the year, weddings and travel plans were canceled, many people quarantined in their homes for months and only interacted with friends, family, and physicians through a computer or phone screen.

Now, with 81% of respondents saying their 2020 plans changed somewhat or a lot (41% and 40%), people are thinking more about the future then they did in 2019 (52%).

Right now, in a year that is still full of many unknowns, many people are focusing on personal growth and goal plans (47%), along with career planning efforts (37%) and travel, with the hopes that the current situation will finally turn its tide.

What This Means for the Aesthetic Practice

Unlike many businesses, the aesthetic industry has seen a steady stream of patients coming into the practice for treatment during the pandemic. Many physicians put this down to stay at home orders that make post-procedure downtime more doable and the rise in video conferencing.

“They're not going out to major social events and social engagements, and if they are going out, [bruising] is oftentimes covered by the mask anyway,” says Joel Cohen, MD, AboutSkin Dermatology and DermSurgery, Denver, Colo. in an article for Aesthetic Authority. “Some of these patients, especially on their first [Kybella] treatment, seem to have 10 days or even two weeks of bullfrog-like swelling, and now it's not a big deal.”

With extra money in patient’s pockets from not traveling and doing other activities, consumers are taking the time to invest in themselves and their appearance.

Mostly, survey respondents are looking forward to having something to look forward to (71% as a whole) but, 74% agree somewhat or strongly agree that they are still hesitant to plan anything months out.

As the holiday season creeps upon us, many aren’t sure how to feel, but are putting heavy emphasis on social distancing and stay-at-home orders (45%).

While being cognizant of pandemic precautions consumers are focusing on selfcare, 72% of adults are saying that they are not afraid of treating themselves with indulgent gifts (35%) and 23% want to receive beauty gifts from others.

Many physicians have made this easier to accomplish for patients by offering telemedicine consultations and including skincare product sales on the practice website.

Even with big changes in consumer shopping, respondents are open to brands helping make the holidays special by tailoring plans to fit social distancing guidelines (43% and 40%, respectively).

“… there’s a flip side to hard times like these. People want to feel better about themselves, so they’ll turn to pick-me-up solutions, like cosmetic procedures or cosmeceuticals. Max Factor, for example, started its makeup business during the Great Depression,” Edwin F. Williams, III, MD, tells Aesthetic Authority.

This year’s consumers want brands to be transparent about shipping offerings including speed, cost and person-to-person contact (84%) as many will be utilizing online shopping due to pandemic concerns.

“Patients will be navigating to your website for answers and updates during the COVID-19 pandemic, so it’s imperative that you have information available on your website and easily accessible,” according to a blog post from Incredible Marketing.