Your Young Consumers’ Friends & Family Influence Their Purchase Decisions More Than Your Marketing!

Have you ever considered that one of the most effective ways to generate new consumers for your brand is a tool that’s rather cost efficient and organic in nature. The tool in question is of course; peer-to-peer marketing!

The concept of peer-to-peer marketing is when one of your existing consumers recommends your product or service to their peers; being their friends, family and colleagues. As people naturally trust their friends, family members and colleagues on a more personal level, a significantly stronger message is conducted through a recommendation made by a peer, rather than an advert per se. Thus conducting a stronger advocacy for the new consumer to achieve preference or trial levels within the product’s perception in their buyer persona.

It’s quite similar to influencer marketing in the sense that an actor is influencing the purchase of a consumer, however it’s tremendously more organic and personal compared to influencer marketing. Influencer marketing is also significantly more costly than P2P marketing and rather more artificial. The organic nature of P2P marketing tends to set a more sustainable model of growth for any marketing team.

  • When making a purchase, 93% of consumers utilise opinions from their friends & family as their primary source of information

Research shows us that younger audiences, especially Gen Z consumers are more susceptible to peer-to-peer marketing. Consumers aged 10 to 25 tend to value product & service recommendations from their friends, colleagues and family highly, as the main influences for their purchase decisions. So, P2P marketing may just be the best way to exponentially increase your market share within Gen Z segments.


What Makes Gen Z Consumers The Perfect Fit?

In case you didn’t know, Gen Z are children and young adults born between 1997-2010. Gen Z culture is built around pragmatism. You can see that they’re comparatively a lot more pragmatic in their studies, work life and personal life choices than their preceding generations. This engraved culture of pragmatism, accompanied by their affinity for technology and strong sense of individualism inherently makes up their consumption behaviour. 

Gen Z’ers tend to be rather more informed consumers compared to their predecessors, they like to do research & obtain information about products & services before making a purchase. They’re also inherently very digital, they like to do their shopping or information gathering on digital mediums. Gen Z’ers also like to shop in-store; but whether they shop online or in-store, they’re the generation that’s most likely to enjoy a personalised shopping experience. Their expectation of a personalised shopping experience includes the whole shopping experience, from the point of introduction to the brand, until receiving customer support after the purchase. They have high expectations from brands to offer high quality & a good overall consumer experience.

To sum up the consumer characteristics of Gen Z’ers; they make up for the most informed consumer segment out of any generation. Our young friends are less likely to fall for old fashioned advertisements & marketing communications that rather try to sell through FOMO or humour. As you can see from the graphs below, they’re more likely to respond to logic or trust. This is why they respond best to P2P marketing; because P2P marketing appeals to their search for trust and logic. This is done through delivering a first hand experience to the new consumer through their friend, family or colleague who they trust

All This Information Seems Interesting, But How Can I Apply It?

As we’ve stated above, P2P marketing is one of the more organic methods in marketing. P2P marketing also has the ability to create a chain growth effect, where every new consumer generated refers your brand to multiple new peers, thus leading to an exponential increase. But it often helps to start this organic growth through a well-planned incentive program. 

You can design a digital or omnichannel campaign where your existing consumers are rewarded for purchase funnel actions taken by their peers who they’ve mobilised. These rewards can be incentives based on existing consumers; sharing your brand’s communications on social media channels in order to create exponential exposure & increase brand knowledge & awareness, or mobilising their peers to purchase your product, or influencing their peers to download your campaign app. Once you’ve generated your new young prospects & consumers, all you have to do is create a personalised & satisfactory experience for the organic referrals to begin!