Can Gen Z advisory boards help brands stay relevant?

Corporations are embracing young voices to stay ahead of the curve.

Turns out the kids aren’t just alright — they’re already in corporate boardrooms.

A diverse group of six young people sitting around a conference room table.

Per Inc., brands are assembling Gen Z advisory panels to glean youthful opinions and, hopefully, to gain a competitive edge with a new generation of consumers.

And there’s a lot at stake

Gen Zers had an estimated $360B in disposable income in 2021, and their share of the market is projected to increase 48% by 2030.

To get a piece of that cash-filled pie, companies are finding creative ways to stay fresh:

  • Wellness company Moon Juice established a Gen Z panel of 20+ members that meets monthly with company executives to discuss everything from pricing to product names.
  • PR agency Ascend has Gen Z board members advise clients on the buying habits and mindsets of the younger generation.
  • Dcdx is a Gen Z consulting firm that helps brands build advisory panels and create marketing strategies.
  • Investment firm Able Partners assembled a Gen Z board to support and advise its portfolio companies.

To find young voices…

… brands are looking inside and beyond their own walls.

The Body Shop — after Gen Zers were particularly ruthless during a company critique — appointed a permanent “Youth Collective” advisory board comprised of both internal employees and external members, all under 30 years old.

For Moon Juice, the gig platform Home From College connected the company with jobseeking Gen Zers.

The ZEO will see you now

Unlike your favorite pair of sneakers, the Gen Z boardroom won’t be a fleeting trend.

Corporate boards are growing younger as boomers retire: In 2022, the average age of board members at Russell 1000 companies dropped for the third straight year to 61.8.

And major companies are embracing the shift — PR giant Edelman launched its “Gen Z Lab” last year, complete with 100 employees and even a ZEO.

Now, BRB, kicking ourselves for wasting time with entry-level grunt work instead of becoming ZEOs.

Topics: Gen Z

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