2022 Insights According to Gen Z

Speaking to Generation Z representatives (aged 16-26), Gen Z insights agency, Imagen Insights, has addressed 5 key topics to see what this elusive generation predicts for the year ahead.

What is Gen Z’s outlook for 2022?

Following the events of the last 2 years, it seems that there is an air of optimism for Gen Z going into 2022 with 68% of respondents describing themselves as optimistic for the coming year. However, when asked about their key concerns, the main ones were money (28%) and education (19%). Despite being hailed as Britain’s most environmentally aware generation, only 5% listed climate change and the environment as a top priority for this year.

Jay Richards and Cat Agostinho, co-founders of Imagen Insights, share their comments on the research:

“Based on what we’re seeing from this report our prediction is that 2022 will be the year of ‘reframing’ for Gen Z. They, like everyone else, have been living through the pandemic, a period of uncertainty and change and we’re seeing this impact across all topics including work, relationships, finance and their general outlook. Although they are generally optimistic and hopeful for opportunities, Gen Z wants to consider things carefully moving forward, weighing up their priorities, while reframing their perspectives, and re-evaluating what they want from life. They want to be better considered by society – something we believe will only evolve over the year ahead.”

What do Gen Z think about sex and relationships? 

Gen Z are hailed as the most open generation when it comes to sex and relationships, specifically when it comes to open sexuality and gender norms, However, despite their openness, it seemed that the majority of Gen Z demonstrated more traditional values. Over half (55%) of those polled reported that they would prefer to meet someone from their personal social media than via a dating app such as Hinge or Tinder.

Additionally, an overwhelming majority expressed wanting to get married in the future (75%) and have children later in life (66%). Even more than that, a staggering 80% reported that they want to own a pet.

What is Gen Z’s opinion about money and finances?

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Gen Z showed a preference for digital banking and the convenience of an app rather than a traditional, brick and mortar institution (only 4%!). There is also a clear interest in cryptocurrency with 54% of the Gen Z cohort looking to invest.

When looking at what Gen Z are spending their money on, they are prioritising experiential over material goods. 34% of the cohort want to invest in travel and holidays this year as well as experiences and events (28%). There is seemingly less demand for material things such as tech (8%) and fashion (12%).

What do Gen Z think about education and work?

An overwhelming majority (83%) of respondents report that they are confident that they will be in a job or studying during 2022. Interestingly, 64% of Gen Z express that they want to work in multiple careers during the next 10 years. Money seems to take a back seat when it comes to work priorities; only 11% reported earnings as a top priority compared to 34% for workplace happiness and 25% for work / life balance.

How much do Gen Z value media and advertising?

There seems to be a lack of trust when it comes to social media (only 7%!) and a vast majority of Gen Z (60%) do not feel accurately represented by the media. More than ever, Gen Z are putting their trust in expert opinions, scientists and the news, with over half (52%) expecting to consume more news and current affairs during 2022.