24 September 2021
Author: The Future Laboratory
Berlin – With Generation Z audiences rapidly redefining luxury, the online fashion retailer is reaching this cohort with an interactive digital campaign titled Luxury on Your Own Terms. Tapping into the video-first nature of Gen Z, the campaign includes a shoppable film series, The Life of Liberty, featuring characters wearing products from Zalando’s luxury collections.
Promotional TikTok content also forms part of the campaign, with diverse young creatives such as queer activist William Ernult acting as brand ambassadors. Here, Zalando is paving the way for a future in which tomorrow's luxury brands are built by young, social media-oriented consumers. ‘By 2025 it is expected that Gen Z and Millennials will conduct the majority of luxury purchases,’ says Anaheta Metghalchi von Berenberg, buying director at Zalando. ‘We are uniquely positioned to provide our customers... with an incredible cross-category offering in an online environment.’
Luxury on Your Own Terms shows how traditional pillars of luxury are being reimagined by emerging generations, with heritage credentials no longer enough to win over consumers who choose brands based on their personal beliefs.
UK – London's Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) charity is retelling classic children's stories to support young people facing challenging life moments. Together with communications agency Adam&Eve/DDB, GOSH is releasing six stories that tackle themes such as loss, illness, isolation and sadness. The first is a poem titled Dee without Dum, which reinvents the narrative of Alice in Wonderland to instead explore separation anxiety.
Alongside the reworked stories, GOSH is launching an online hub with resources and activities that incorporate play as a core part of coping with difficulties. By doing so, the charity recognises the importance of teaching tenacity among early age children. Laura Walsh, head of play at Great Ormond Street Hospital, says: ‘Play is a superpower at the fingertips of all children, and it’s especially important at times of change or worry, when building our children’s resilience can help them to cope with life’s challenges.’
Growing up in an increasingly uncertain world, Generation Alpha will benefit from age-appropriate yet un-condescending communications that address these more jarring topics.
US – Recognising the ongoing popularity of digital artworks, GIF database Giphy is translating moving images into a physical book format. Titled Frame by Frame, the publication is limited to just 750 copies, and is the culmination of 35 international artists responding to Giphy’s 'Be Animated' mission statement. To create dynamic pages, the book uses lenticular holograms, stickers and image flips.
Each page also features a QR code for readers to view the animations on their smartphones. This phygital approach allows people to appreciate intricate details of GIF artwork, while also experiencing it in its original form. Commenting on its diverse group of contributors, Giphy says: ‘... flipping through the pages reveals a vibrant and diverse world of claymation, celluloid [hand-drawn] animation, drawing on bodies, computer renders and photographic portraits. All of which are united by a love for the animated GIF.’
By celebrating digital art, Giphy is packaging up design in a way that appeals to the mindsets of Gen Viz, a visual-first cohort whose communications are dominated by emojis, videos and animations.
US – Seeking to connect with new audiences, clothing retailer Hollister is launching a long-term programme to support the Latinx creator community. The initiative, called Hollister Good Vibras, will see the brand work with emerging Latinx creators across the fashion, music and comedy verticals on Instagram and TikTok. To mark the launch, the brand is also releasing a bilingual, made-for-TikTok hip hop album that was produced by the collective.
Ongoing initiatives will see Hollister tap into the Good Vibras community to co-create branded content. By doing this, the brand recognises the importance of working directly with Generation Z to inform brand decisions – particularly when reaching specific cultural groups. ‘Our customers made it clear that they not only love seeing Latinx representation within the creators we work with, but also wanted more programmes developed specifically for the Latinx community,’ comments Kristin Scott, global brand president at Abercrombie & Fitch Co, the parent brand of Hollister.
Despite being one of America’s largest multicultural groups, Hispanic audiences have historically been left uncatered for. Now, the community’s emerging youth are galvanising to redefine their representation.
UK – Children’s extracurricular organisation Scouts is expanding its offering to welcome 4-5-year-olds. In a programme called Squirrels, young children will be encouraged to explore outdoor areas, make new friends and learn new skills. This offshoot comes as a response to the isolation that pre-school and reception-aged children have experienced during the pandemic.
Squirrels will initially be launching in areas that have been hardest hit by the pandemic. And with its focus on outdoor areas, the programme also ensures that access to nature remains accessible to all young people. ‘Squirrels is part of our commitment to help young people, families and communities come back stronger from the pandemic,’ comments Matt Hyde, CEO of Scouts. ‘If you’re four, you’ve spent a third of your life in lockdowns. We know this has especially impacted children in communities hardest hit by the pandemic.’
By offering such a service, Scouts is pro-actively responding to the development needs of Generation Alpha – and looking beyond the content of conventional school curriculums.
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