Churches and Independent Filmmakers are now realizing they are late in gearing their presentations to the taste and needs of the Millennials. Both groups, which at one time drove our society, are playing catch up in shifting their attention to the next generation. Unfortunately, it’s too late.
Generation Z is now positioned to drive our society forward. They are a bigger group than the Millennials and the remaining Baby Boomers. They are currently the largest population group with the most disposable income at $40B annually.
In the church world, the structure or format of services is still geared toward Gen X. In the independent film world the movies are geared toward Baby Boomers. That’s not to say a handful of churches or movies weren’t made for the Millennials, but those organizations are in the minority. Regardless, both groups should be refocusing on Generation Z.
Millennials desired to learn the truth about living life from the Baby Boomers, but instead got inauthentic rhetoric. Gen X was too small to fill the role, so the Millennials did the best they could on their own. This led to watching less movies and not attending church. Only about a third of Millennials go to movies. Also, about a third attend churches. Neither of which is geared toward their needs.
But this year, Generation Z has now crossed the point of demarcation in being the largest population group and has the most disposable income. They haven’t yet determined their views on church, nor have they decided yet on making movies a part of their lives.
Pastors and filmmakers have a clean slate to build a new audience. Unfortunately, most have just caught on to the impact of the Millennials and might not catch on to the growing power of Generation Z until its too late. But for those who want to be ahead of the curve, I’ll share some of their characteristics…
Realistic Not Idealistic
Gen Z will not take hope from anyone based on an expressed set of ideals. Instead, they want the unadulterated truth about how to do real life. They are very realistic in what daily steps are required to succeed in this life and they don’t care about the media storm or the news drama filling the airwaves. They just want to know the simple truths necessary to live a good life.
Live in the Shadows
After watching the Millennials get into trouble with social media by accidental posts or the PC police chasing down the one wrong sentence someone uttered, Gen Z is standing back in the shadows. This generation has been walking away from top media sites like Facebook (lost 25% of Gen Z in last few years) to avoid being pulled in to the unwanted limelight.
Hard Working Entrepreneurs
Three fourths of Gen Z wants to be entrepreneurs. They are okay with hard work, as long as they get the direct benefit that comes with operating ones’ own business. They see the Millennials as lazy and accomplishing little, making the market ripe for Gen Z to take over. This will shrink large corporations and grow boutique businesses that will team on a project-by-project basis – Breathing life into a new kind of economy.
Gen Z is a hyper focused generation whose awareness is all encompassing. They are very much aware of what all generations are doing, how it affects them, and how to counter the negative effects. They are capable of piecing information together from multiple sources and coming up with new solutions that far exceed the Millennials.
To keep up with their rapid thought patterns and the development of their ideas, Gen Z sees technology as mandatory to survival. Most would put technology in the same category as air, water, food and shelter. This life pattern will mean more relationships developed over projects than in any other form.
These are the people the churches and filmmakers must learn how to interact with, teach, and entertain. Gen Z will be coming into power in about ten years, giving churches and studios time to ramp up to meet their needs. Unfortunately, many will miss the opportunity since they are just now focusing on the Millennials.
Copyright © 2016 by CJ Powers