dentsu Z Looks into the World of a Generation of Contradictions


Creative Service Line of dentsu China has introduced the paper “Unlocking Gen Z 2022: A Generation of Contradictions” that looks at the buying and shopping habits of the Gen Z generation. 

Marketers have long been researching and analyzing the Gen Z group, also known as Zoomers. However, to this day, they still don’t have a real clue about the generation known for their money-making and saving abilities who still buy products that support their hobbies and passions. Zoomers freely move between the real and virtual worlds, wanting to be unique but still maintain strong cultural bonds with their communities. They are young but value their health and wellness. Dentsu Z, a dedicated dentsu Zoomers, was launched to help unravel the enigma surrounding the Gen Z generation.

The paper, authored by the dentsu Z team, looks at four areas marketers can use to help them reach Gen Z in China’s needs – culture, technology, entertainment and consumption. 

Download “Unlocking Gen Z 2022: A Generation of Contradictions” in full here.


The diverse lifestyles and values Gen Z live shows more diversified cultures and beliefs; cultures spark and cultivated well from the collisions between freedom and passion, mainstream and individuality. The "indulgent" Gen Z are eager for "non-pretentious" brands to keep communicating with them.


Gen Z pay for virtual idols in real life, while experience the pleasure of parallel time and space in the virtual world. It does not matter who transmits the information, but more about the information itself and the real experience. With the rapid iteration of modern technology and the constant updates of the virtual world, brands need to respond quickly to move young consumers.


Gen Z has many diversified interests, but when they find their niche you can expect them to be totally immersed. Now, interacting and engaging with their communities that share the interests dominates their focus. To be a good "player" is the label that young people pursue, while playing with the young people might be a good approach for brands to get closer to the young.


The Gen Z yuan is powerful in China. Their attitudes towards consumption gradually change from meeting functional needs to self-pleasing. Get what Gen Z loves will drive a long-term brand growth.


Gen Z is triggering a great migration of consumer trends. Despite being divided into diverse communities, they appear to have a shared community consensus, and any voice from the niche could become the next consuming craze. The paper determines that four things must be addressed if marketers are to capture Gen-Zers’ attention. 

  • Find Gen Z’s real voice about important cultural and societal topics.

  • Focus on various niche communities that share a common passion with Gen Z.

  • Realize Gen Z cares more about real capabilities of their followed influencers. 

  • Focus on meeting Gen Z’s real emotional needs either through the virtual or real world.

Gen Z’s idea of consumption also comprises emotional satisfaction, good society, political attitude and innovative imagination. 

Keita Ishinawa, CEO of Creative dentsu China said, “We all share the same visions with marketers, which is using unlimited creativity to reach a mutual fit with young people, brands and platforms to stimulate the vigorous consumption power of the Z era.”

Roughly 300 million Zoomers are living in China. Together, they are expected to spend more than 5 trillion yuan ($8b) in 2021, with the number anticipated to growly steadily. By looking at and understanding the complex minds of Gen Z, marketers can develop strategies that will connect this new generation of consumers to its brands.

Chris Chen, Chief Creative Officer of Creative dentsu China and dentsu Z initiator said, “Exploring youth culture through their way of thinking allows brands and marketers to foster innovative ideas and engage in their different interest communities using their own language. This is what these young creatives of the dentsu Z team are showing us with their unlimited energy, something the new generation of creatives has.”


About dentsu

dentsu Z is a pioneering force of Gen Z young creatives with a mission to proactively make strategic plans and propose solutions for clients, explore innovative ideas by putting cutting-edge technology into practice and create profound cultural experiences. As both consumers of generation Z and young creatives deliver direct insights, create an intimate psychological connection between the brand and the consumers of the next generation.


Part of dentsu, dentsu international comprises of six leadership brands - Carat, dentsu X, iProspect, Isobar, dentsuMB and Merkle, each supported by its specialist divisions and scaled services. With best-in-class services and solutions in Media, Customer Experience Management (CXM), and Creative, dentsu international operates in over 145 markets worldwide with more than 45,000 dedicated specialists.


Dentsu’s creative offering in China brings together global creative agencies dentsuMB and Isobar’s world-class brand and experience transformation capabilities to deliver idea-led and tech-enabled experiences that align belief and behavior to accelerate growth, empowered by a dedicated network of 1200+ experts located in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Wuhan.,


Follow dentsu Z for a window into the world of Gen Z!

For additional information, you can reach us at

Kevin Mann

Chief Growth Officer, dentsu China

Anya Chen

Marketing Communications, Creative, dentsu China