After the Millennial generation came a generation that did not go through any technological transition (until now) since they were born and grew up connected to the Internet, with smartphones, tablets, consoles and televisions that connect to the network easily and almost automatically. This generation of young people behaves in a different way, not only in the physical world, but also in the digital world.
For the Baby boomer generation it was unthinkable, for Generation X it was quite an achievement, for Millennials it is commonplace, but for Generation Z, watching video online is part of their life in all aspects, from education to entertainment.
Although the Millennials were the great promoters of YouTube; for Gen Z, video consumption is different and much more frequent, since they do not want long videos of more than 3 minutes, on the contrary, they look for short videos that allow them to enter and leave many topics in a short time.
A Deloitte study found that 40% of people between the ages of 16 and 24 watch more than 30 minutes of short videos a day. Other Cisco and IAB studies show that 68% of these young people share video with others and 92% do so from mobile devices.
How short videos relate to internet searches
A few months ago Prabhakar Raghavan, Vice President of Google, made a brief statement that showed how the new generations are very different from the previous ones.
“We keep learning, over and over again, that new Internet users don’t have the expectations and mindset that we’ve grown accustomed to. The queries they make are completely different.
These users are not typically typing in keywords, but rather are looking to discover content in new and more immersive ways.”
For the first time Google accepts that they are taking away market:
“In our studies, something like 40% of young people, when looking for a place to eat, they don’t go to Google Maps or search”, “They go to TikTok or Instagram”.
Comfort and speed vs precision and detail
Google’s algorithms have been fine-tuning for more than two decades to deliver a better experience every day. Searching in Maps is almost a guarantee to find something we are looking for and anyone who has used these services knows it, but still young people prefer not to use it.
Some of the reasons revolve around the comfort that it gives the user to be within the same platform, without leaving it, without making more clicks but finding what they need right there.
Another reason is that younger people like to be given short, concrete and fun explanations on video, so when they search they want the results to come to them that way.
In the logic of a Gen Z, platforms like Facebook and Google are complicated and slow to find information, so they prefer others that from their perspective give them speed to find what they want, since they are a slightly impatient generation.
It’s not just Tiktok
Tiktok certainly tops the list of platforms that young people prefer; Instagram, for its part, provides them with that combination of image or video and with the Reels it offers an experience very similar to that of Tiktok. Something very interesting is that the GenZ use this platform a lot to geographically search for places like restaurants or stores, hence they use the phrase “It is an Instagrammable place”, that is, it is very visually attractive to take photos or videos.
Another platform that this generation uses is Discord, where they have a lot of their social life and there they look for information grouped by topic in what they call “servers”. It is worth mentioning that Discord has almost 400 million users worldwide, 80% of them are under 25 years old.
Knowledge that is not shared completely loses its value