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Getting your company in Gen Z’s $360B wallet.

April 13, 2022

Our toxic trait is watching The Masters and thinking we could definitely sink a 30-ft putt. Congrats to Scottie Scheffler on his first green jacket!

In this week's edition:

  • Helping your employees cope with inflation.
  • Ghosting potential job applicants (spoiler alert: don’t do it).
  • Why it pays to be known as an industry expert.
  • How to get a piece of the $360B Zoomer pie.


Employees have to deal with inflation, too.

PHOTO: A group of people (two males and our females) sitting around a table with bottles and phones, talking.

Inflation is wild. *Cries*
Tell us about it. The consumer price index in March rose 8.5% (yep, you read that right) from a year ago, beating February’s already record-breaking numbers.

When it comes to your business, you’ve probably already experienced the hardships that come with inflation. You may have had to deal with the rising cost of the materials you need or had to raise your own prices. Unfortunately, you’re not the only person in your business who’s suffering the fallout of inflation.

Yeah, my employees are struggling.
Prices are rising for just about everything, and the cost-of-living is also increasing. But wages aren’t matching up. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, civilian wages and salaries only increased 4.5% in 2021 — much lower than the rate of inflation.

How can I help them? I don’t have the budget for huge salary bumps.
You’re not alone. Some businesses have already had to raise their salary offerings due to the high demand for labor. Plus, 45% of businesses haven’t factored inflation into their salary budgets.

The good news is that there are some ways to help your employees deal with rising prices beyond raising their salaries:

  • Help your employees where they’re hurting the most. Gas and food price increases are hitting consumers hard. Gas cards or weekly paid lunches are small ways to show your employees you’re committed to helping where you can.
  • Introduce bonuses and benefits. If you can’t raise salaries, see if there’s room in your budget for one-time bonuses to assist with the immediate effects of inflation. You can also introduce benefits that will help you and your employees. For example, benefit programs — like tuition repayment and child-care assistance — are tax-deductible for businesses.

👉 Find out more.


The haunting of ghosted job applicants

Ghosting — the act of dropping all communication without warning — is typical of the dating scene, but it’s also pretty prevalent in the hiring world. According to one survey, 84% of job candidates have ghosted a potential or current employer in the past 18 months.

Yes, it’s frustrating, but let’s talk about the flip side of that coin — when companies ghost potential candidates.

It can’t happen that often.
You’d be surprised. Indeed conducted a survey that found 77% of job seekers have been ghosted by employers since the start of the pandemic. These ghostings can happen at any stage of the hiring process, with 10% of applicants even reporting that they were ghosted after a verbal job offer was made.

That’s rough, but if people can ghost me, I can ghost them, right?
That’s one way to look at it. But when hiring is tough and employees are hard to find, ghosting might not be the best practice. We get it: you’re busy and time is precious, so it’s easier to pass on certain candidates and simply let them fall through the cracks. But that experience is going to give your business a bad name.

If something happens with the person you do hire (i.e., they ghost you), you’ll need applicants to fall back on. But no one will apply to your business if you have a reputation for ghosting candidates.

So the next time you have an applicant that might not work out, send them a quick email. Thank them for their interest, tell them it’s not a right fit at this time, and let them know that you’ll be in touch if something else opens up. Easy peasy lemon squeezy.


5 steps to become an industry expert

Am I an expert?
Face it — you know your stuff (at least, in your industry). You understand the problems of your customers and give them the solutions they need. So yes, you are an expert!

But you need to make sure you position yourself as an expert to potential customers. That way, you’ll gain their trust and they’ll be much more likely to buy your products and services.

We’ll let you in on five simple steps to tell every customer-to-be that you are the go-to expert in your industry.

Step 1: Understand your audience and their challenges.
Truth bomb: most customers, readers, and listeners care more about their challenges than who you actually are (AKA, your credentials and expertise). If you want to grab their attention, you need to understand what they’re going through first.

Start by creating a target audience profile. In other words, describe the type of person who needs your expertise. Who are you speaking to? What common obstacles do they face? What solutions do they need?

This helps you speak directly to your audience and connect with them on relevant issues. And then, you can position yourself as an expert by offering solutions.

Step 2: Offer free content that gives results.
Your website is usually the first point of interaction with prospective customers. So it’s a great opportunity to prove that you are a leading expert in your industry.

When you provide free, valuable info on your website, you build trust and rapport with your visitors. Especially when the content solves common problems and offers expert insight.

Here’s a great place to start:

  1. State the problem. Use research and stats to show the problem exists.
  2. Offer a solution. Provide a free solution for real results to build trust.
  3. Create a demand. Build on the gains they’ve already realized and try offering a bonus for signing up for your service or buying your product (like a free trial or additional resource).

👉See all 5 steps.


Why Gen Z’s payment methods matter to your business

The facts:
Gen Z’s pockets are attracting a lot of attention from businesses. Why? Not only are they the largest population cohort globally, but they’re worth $360B in disposable income — that’s double the estimate from three years ago. And as they continue to enter the workforce and increase their earning power, that number stands to go up.

Okay, break it down. What does that mean for my business?
Well, a global study of 6.5K people between the ages of 16 and 24 looked into the shopping, social, and payment preferences of Zoomers. Here are some of the insights:

  • Social media is part of Gen Z's daily life and is increasingly driving their economic activity. No surprise there. But out of those surveyed, 7 out of 10 said they have purchased products they discovered on social media, such as Facebook and TikTok.
  • Cash is out. Mobile wallets and payments are decidedly in.
  • “Shop ‘til you drop” is Zoomers’ motto. Shopping accounted for most of their spending, beating out entertainment, events, and eating out.

Well, how can I get a piece of that pie?
Two things you can do to attract some of that Zoomer cash flow:

  1. Make sure your company’s products and services have an active social media presence. (Couldn’t hurt to get up to speed on some TikTok trends.)
  2. Expand some of your business’ payment methods to mobile-friendly options. Almost 50% of Zoomers now use mobile wallets — in fact, 62% of them don’t have any bank accounts at all due to their heavy dependence on mobile wallets.

👉 Read more about the study.


This week's highlight reel

  • “I’m Just a Bill.”  Last Thursday, the House passed a $55B bill that would provide assistance to small businesses struggling as a result of COVID. The Senate still has to pass the bill, so keep your eyes on the Hill. (And we can keep rhyming… still. Okay, we’ll stop now.)
  • Multisearch > multiverse. Searching by text alone is so 2021. Now, you can run a search using text and images at the same time — AKA, a “multisearch” — via Google Lens, the company’s image recognition technology. Currently, the feature is in beta and only available in English in the U.S.
  • Planes, Trains, and Automobiles. Uber wants to be a one-stop app for all your travel needs. Launching in the UK, users can book different travel options in the app, including trains, buses, planes, and car rentals. We’re already planning our cross-continental UberEats orders (#wishfulthinking).
  • You don’t know Jack. Err… Jill. But you will soon. Frito-Lay recently unveiled Cracker Jill, a new partner to the classic Cracker Jack line of snacks that features five different female characters who will represent the diversity of women in the U.S.


Here’s what else is on The Manual’s mind

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