The oldest members of Generation Alpha are only in their teens, but they're already on track to be the most powerful consumer group, with 87% of their parents saying their “Alpha kids” influence their purchases.¹ By ramping up tech and customizing experiences, you can get ahead of the curve to land this powerful demographic.
Over 50% of Gen Alphas own tablets, and according to recent research, 49% already have a smartphone. Growing up in a completely digital age will influence their purchasing decisions, so it’s crucial to stay on top of tech advancements to appeal to this smart generation who won’t tolerate outdated technology. Gen Alpha gravitates toward abstract and highly visual content, so your Instagram and TikTok presence remains vital.
Strive for a young — yet authentic — voice that bridges the gap between your brand and this generation. Collaborate with local influencers who align with your restaurant's values and target audience. Engage them in creating content, hosting events, or offering exclusive promotions. The endorsement of trusted influencers can significantly boost your restaurant's visibility and credibility with them.
Optimize your website and online menus for mobile to make it easy for Gen Alpha and their parents to explore your offerings and place orders. With back-to-school near and extracurricular activities ramping up, they will appreciate a restaurant with an easy, efficient ordering system.
And this group is no stranger to gamification, so consider incorporating this into your restaurant experience with loyalty programs or interactive games. Encourage participation, offer rewards, and create a sense of competition among Gen Alpha customers. This approach will keep them engaged and help to persuade their parents to pick your place over a competitor. With FanConnect, a Performance One Source partner, you can ensure you have a top-notch loyalty program to capture their attention.
Structured mealtimes have become a thing of the past. As Gen Alpha stayed at home during the pandemic, snacking became the norm, as it did for many consumers, and it has continued to trend upward.
Create a small but inviting snack menu that can be ordered any time of day. Gen Alpha parents are seeking healthier options, so ensure your snack menu has a few healthy, functional food options that can sustain energy and provide an early morning or afternoon pick-me-up. Prepping ahead of time for cold grab-and-go items will make it easier on kitchen staff — and easy for Gen Alpha and their parents to order a quick delivery that won't throw their fast-paced schedules off — or make them crash after a big lunch.
With 70% of parents choosing restaurants based on kid-friendly entertainment and activities, it’s helpful to add visually appealing spaces or immersive experiences to cater to this demographic. Capture attention with colorful murals, photo walls, themed seating areas, or interactive tables. This will drive engagement and help increase brand exposure among Generation Alpha and their social circles.
The Customization Generation
Gen Alpha wants brands to meet the needs of their individual preferences. That means customizable meals, alternatives for specific diets, and personal taste. This not only empowers them but also creates a sense of excitement and ownership over their dining experience. Offer an a la carte menu, or build-your-own bowl or salad with customizable toppings, sauces, and sides. Sometimes all it takes is an Instagram-worthy milkshake they can deck out with their favorite breakfast cereal or candy, a nacho station, or sundae bar to grab and keep the attention of this consumer generation.
1Currency, Raising the Wealthiest Generation
2Morning Consult, A Brand’s Guide to Gen Alpha