How Roblox Became the New Social Media for Gen Z and Alpha

How Roblox Became the New Social Media for Gen Z and Alpha

  • Read time 4min
  • published 2024.05.08 updated 2024.05.09
  • what
    • Blog
    • Brands
    • Gaming

Roblox emerged in a time dominated by digital connectivity, not as a gaming platform, but as the new frontier for interaction among Gen Z and Alpha, redefining the landscape of social media.

To successfully connect with these younger demographics, brands must recognize the important role of gaming platforms like Roblox. Exclusible offers expert guidance in navigating the unique media consumption habits of these generations. Dive into our article to understand how present gaming is in the lives of Gen Z and Alpha, why Roblox must not be overlooked, and why brands should run, not walk.

Gaming is the New Social

Millennials will recall when timelines were filled with genuine interactions consisting of posts, comments, and exchanges between family and friends. This landscape has shifted dramatically. Today, social media has become less “social” and more “media” with advertisements, influencer endorsements, and polished creator content populating our timelines. This shift has left many feeling disconnected from the authentic social experience they once cherished.

Consequently, a growing number of young consumers are seeking refuge in gaming platforms. These virtual realms offer not only entertainment but also a sense of community and connection that seems increasingly elusive on traditional social media. While the original social media platforms still have their place, younger generation are finding a new space where they can truly engage and connect with others on a deeper level.

According to Newzoo CI Games & Esports 2022, the total online population devotes most of their leisure time to social media (20%) and watching broadcast TV (20%), with only 14% allocated to engaging with gaming. However, the landscape shifts notably with each successive generation. Gen Z spends a considerable 23% of their leisure time on social media and 17% immersed in gaming. Even more strikingly, Gen Alpha allocates a substantial 21% of their leisure time to gaming, making it their primary source of entertainment.

This trend underscores the evolving preferences and habits of younger generations. When it comes to engaging with gaming, these demographics not only participate more frequently, but are also approaching it in entirely new ways compared to their predecessors. They are not just players, but also viewers and active members of online gaming communities.

Remarkably, a significant 79% of the overall population now embraces gaming in multifaceted ways, from attending game conventions to tuning into gaming podcasts, proudly identifying themselves as game enthusiasts. However, the numbers soar even higher among Gen Z, with a staggering 90% falling into this category, while an impressive 94% of Gen Alpha share the same fervor for gaming.

For these generations, gaming has become their social media, providing them with a safe environment to connect away from the noise of today’s digital landscape. Multiplayer features and social elements in these platforms facilitate real connections, with 58% of Gen Z individuals frequently or occasionally gathering in game worlds, even when not actively playing, according to Newzoo CI Games & Esports 2022.

Means of Engagement | Newzoo CI Games & Esports 2022

Roblox, the Virtual Hangout Destination

Within the vast offering of the gaming industry, Gen Z and Alpha are gravitating away from traditional games towards those centered around user-generated content (UGC), which, as the name suggests, empower players to craft their own content, aligning seamlessly with their desire for creativity and self-expression.

Roblox distinguishes itself within the UGC realm by offering an exceptionally user-friendly content creation experience through its intuitive Roblox Studio platform. Moreover, its unparalleled success can be attributed to its array of over 18 million games spanning various genres, catering to the diverse preferences of players across different devices, including PC, mobile, and consoles.

However, considering that multiplayer and social elements rank highest in appeal among Gen Z gamers, as highlighted by Newzoo CI Games & Esports 2022, Roblox’s relentless emphasis on social features emerges as the paramount driver of its’ triumph. This is chiefly because Roblox stands as the epitome of social interaction among UGC platforms in the industry, enabling players to forge connections by adding friends, joining groups, exchanging private messages, engaging in real-time conversations via voice chat, collaborating in multiplayer environments, co-creating worlds, and much more.

These remarkable features have propelled Roblox into a sensation among both Gen Z and Alpha, with daily active users dedicating an average of 2.4 hours per day to the platform. Additionally, according to Roblox, users exchange an astonishing average of 2.5 billion chat messages daily, underscoring the platform’s immense popularity and vibrant social engagement.

The social influence of Roblox has even spurred the creation of other social platforms around it. Freshcut is a community hub, dedicated to showcasing diverse Roblox content, where creators looking to showcase their latest adventures join fans looking for new content, fostering a dynamic environment of exploration and creativity.

Top UGC platforms | GEEIQ The State of Virtual Brand Experiences 2023

Tapping into Gen Z and Alpha

Numerous prominent brands are actively competing for the time and attention of Gen Z and Alpha, recognizing them as a largely untapped demographic that accounts for approximately one third of the global population. This competition has intensified within the realm of gaming, with a notable surge in branded experiences emerging in recent years, where Roblox has emerged as a major player.

But what’s the rationale behind this fervent pursuit? According to Newzoo Global Gamer Study 2023, collaborations between brands and gaming platforms, as well as with influential streamers, wield substantial influence over purchasing behaviors. A staggering 57% of Gen Z and 59% of Gen Alpha report discovering new brands while immersed in gaming, while 48% of Gen Z and 47% of Gen Alpha acknowledge making purchases based on recommendations or usage by their favorite streamers.

These statistics underscore how important it is for brands to be present when and where it matters to youth audiences. Yet, it extends beyond mere presence in gaming platforms, it entails a holistic approach that encompasses realms both within and outside this universe. Given that today’s youth audience seamlessly transitions from gaming content to consuming videos and insights from gaming influencers, brands must extend their reach accordingly.

New Branded Experiences | GEEIQ The State of Virtual Brand Experiences 2023

Final Remarks

Navigating the complex landscape of media consumption among Gen Z and Alpha is challenging, yet brands cannot afford to overlook the importance of engaging with this demographic.

They must demonstrate agility, adaptability, and above all, authenticity. At Exclusible, we offer expert guidance to brands seeking to forge meaningful connections with these audiences and position themselves at the forefront of emerging tech.

Let’s connect and explore the potential of gaming together.