How Africa’s marketers can connect with the ‘cool squad’ in 2024

By our African Marketing Confederation News Team | 2024

Youth agency discusses key marketing trends that will resonate with Generation Z consumers in an authentic and impactful way.

Gen Z is taking the lead in shaping marketing trends for 2024, says Africa-focused specialist youth agency, Student Village. It has identified the top trends it believes marketers need to know.

Photo by RDNE Stock project from Pexels


“These trends not only capture the attention of this audience, but also provide a roadmap for brands to connect with this ‘cool squad’ in an authentic and impactful way,” the agency states. Among them: 


An affair with buy now, pay later 


Gen Zs have ushered in a revolution in how consumers approach payments. With a penchant for fast, cutting-edge technology tools, this digital-native generation demands flexibility and convenience in their shopping experiences.  


As the e-commerce landscape becomes more competitive, brands must adapt to remain relevant among younger consumers. Interest-free payment solutions available at checkout are no longer a luxury, but a strategic imperative for brands looking to thrive in the dynamic market of 2024. 


Trend-driven consumption 


This cohort’s trend-driven nature extends beyond fashion. Marketers can capitalise on their interest in vegan products, plant-based meats, and fandoms by aligning with popular trends in food, TV shows, music and gaming. Engaging with fan communities and highlighting relevant products boosts brand visibility and appeal. 


Search shifts to social media platforms 


Gen Z is turning to social media for authentic and relatable answers. Platforms like TikTok are becoming preferred search engines, with these consumers choosing it over Google.  


“Social media apps are evolving into one-stop search shops, with features like TikTok’s Keyword Insights tool and Instagram’s robust search function. Marketers must optimise content for social discovery, ensuring it remains authentic and trustworthy,” Student Village says. 


AI takes centre stage 


Artificial intelligence isn’t just a buzzword; it’s the key to connecting with Gen Z on a deeper level. In 2024, AI algorithms are reaching new heights, allowing marketers to hyper-personalise campaigns.  


“From customised content recommendations to personalised shopping experiences, AI fosters brand loyalty and improves conversion rates by creating authentic connections with consumers.  


We’re seeing AI’s massive impact within the side-hustle/small business space too; where various AI tools are used to increase productivity, creativity and efficiency,” the agency states in its analysis of marketing trends likely to impact the youth market. 

Dr Kin Kariisa

Group CEO - Next Media

Dr. Kin Kariisa is an extraordinary force at the helm of Next Media Services, a conglomerate encompassing NBS TV, Nile Post, Sanyuka TV, Next Radio, Salam TV, Next Communication, Next Productions, and an array of other influential enterprises. His dynamic role as Chief Executive Officer exemplifies his unwavering commitment to shaping media, business, and community landscapes.
With an esteemed academic journey, Dr. Kariisa’s accolades include an Honorary PhD in exemplary community service from the United Graduate College inTexas, an MBA from United States International University in Nairobi, Kenya, a Master’s degree in Computer Engineering from Huazong University in China, and a Bachelor’s degree in Statistics from Makerere University.
Dr. Kariisa pursued PhD research in Computer Security and Identity Management at Security of Systems Group, Radboud University in Nijmegen, Netherlands. As a dynamic educator, he has shared his expertise as a lecturer of e-Government and Information Security at both Makerere University and Radboud University.

Dr Kin did his PhD research in Computer Security and Identity Management at Security of Systems Group, Radbond University in Nigmegen, Netherlands. He previously served as a lecturer of e-Government and Information Security at Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda and Radbond University in Netherlands.

Dr Kin did his postgraduate courses in Strategic Business Management, Strategic Leadership Communication and Strategies for Leading Successful Change Initiatives at Harvard University, Boston USA.

  • Other current and previous roles played by Dr Kin Kariisa:
  • Lecturer of e-Government and Information Security to graduate students at Makerere University, Kampala and Radbond University in the Netherlands
  • Director of Eco Bank Uganda Limited, one of the largest banks in Africa
  • Chairman of the National Association of Broadcasters, an umbrella industry association for all Television, Radio and online broadcasters in Uganda.
  • Chairman of Board of Directors of Nile Hotel International, that owns the leading hotel in Uganda, Kampala Serena Hotel.
  • Chairman of Board of Directors of Soliton Telmec Uganda, the leading telecom company in Optic fibre business managing over 80% of optic fibre in Uganda.