3 Simple Hacks For Marketing To Generation Z

3 Simple Hacks For Marketing To Generation Z

Is your business geared towards providing products and services for younger consumers? If so, then your core audience may be made up of Generation Z. These are the people who were born from the mid-1990s to the early 2010s.

Don’t make the mistake of making assumptions about the young people of today, as they can be very different from the teens of other eras. In fact, Gen Z members are even different from Millennials who were young adults at the turn of the millennium. It’s been found that the typical Gen Z has a shorter attention span due to the numerous apps and digital media they’ve been subjected to. Millennials also came of age during the recession while Gen Z are barely aware of that period. Consequently, Millennials are more driven to seek out bargains.

So how do you market to the members of Gen Z? To help you out, here are some tips that should get you starting:

1. Focus Your Language on How It Feels to Use Your Products

The Gen Z people want to know right away about the experience of using your product or receiving your service. They don’t particularly care about the scientific details of how your technology works. Get to the point – communicate your message and value proposition clearly and quickly.

2. Be Inclusive

The young people of Gen Z don’t really have much of an “us vs. them” mentality. They’re more inclusive, and your marketing language must mirror such attitudes. So it’s better if you can emphasize how your brand is great for everyone, rather than only for a certain segment of the people. Stress how your brand helps to bring people together, rather than drive them apart.

3. Promote Your Extra-Curricular Activities

There are plenty of causes that you can help with, whether it’s saving the environment, contributing to medical research, or helping the poor. This is to help your brand stand out and avoid having a faceless (and heartless) corporate mentality. While every business is invariably about making money, you also need to make sure that your brand identity is associated with contributing to the community.

Do Your Research

The people of Gen Z prefer that you’re actually aware of what they want. You only need to ask them what these wants are, and they’d be glad to tell you. These young adults are more likely to respond to your surveys and questionnaires because they want their voices to be heard.

You can always set up a survey on your site so you can pose them the questions you need to ask. Short surveys are better, but these can help you find out how they feel about your brand.

So what do we learn from all these tips? The basic lesson is that the members of Gen Z want a brand that represents their values. You have to care about the same things they care about, instead of telling them what to care about. Invariably, young adults value their freedom, and they’re free to choose your brand only if your brand feels like it fits their self-image.

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Santa Monica, Culver City, Venice, Hollywood, and beyond
LAStartups.com is a digital lifestyle publication that covers the culture of startups and technology companies in Los Angeles. It is the go-to site for people who want to keep up with what matters in Los Angeles’ tech and startups from those who know the city best.
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How is Coworking Great For The Los Angeles Tech Scene

100 Shared Office And Desk Space to Work in Los Angeles

Check out these 100 coworking spaces in LA.

Co-working spaces have started to take off recently, and it’s all thanks to the need of business locations. A city like Los Angeles tends to have very high rent and purchase prices for real estate, and that means you need to find a great way to acquire new business locations. But if you’re a business or a freelancer that needs a business presence yet which lacks the necessary amount of money, it’s super hard for you to get the job done properly and not worry about possible problems.

And that’s where the need for co-working places comes into play. These locations are very different when compared to a regular office for example. And that’s because there are multiple businesses all residing in a single place.

How is co-working great for the Los Angeles Tech Scene?

Tons of startups want to grow and evolve. And they can totally do that with the right amount of help and support. Even freelancers need a proper business location as they want to avoid working from home. Juice bars and coffee shops are ok for them, but they can end up being problematic as time goes by. You are much better off going for a shared workspace. You do have plenty of space to share with others, yet at the same time, you can fulfill your tasks and just enjoy your time without that much of a problem too.

The Los Angeles co-working spaces are designed with affordability in mind. They are quite affordable, way more affordable than a rental. That’s why most freelancers and startup owners gravitate towards such a place. They also encourage networking, which is why a lot of people enjoy co-working in the first place. It just offers you a way to connect with business professionals in the same industry.

And since the tech industry is booming in Los Angeles, it’s easy to see that the co-working spaces are amazing networking places, to begin with. On top of that, they do offer flexibility. You are free to come and work at any given hour during the day or night. And you also have amenities like coffee machines, fully equipped kitchens and so on. The only difference is that you don’t have to worry about the leasing formalities anymore. And the costs are way lower, which is what makes this entire process very convenient and amazing in its own right.

Who uses co-working spaces in Los Angeles?

It might sound a bit cliché, but every business that wants to grow and save money tends to focus on this type of spaces. And the benefit is that they can easily make quite a lot of money while also avoiding lots of expenses. Every tiny expense matters if you plan on saving money, so it certainly makes a lot of sense to use such co-working spaces.

But the interesting thing is that even some of the large organizations are coming onboard with this. It makes a lot of sense to use co-working spaces especially when they want to transition to a new building. Plus, they can cut the expenses if they want to downsize and use a smaller team, then outsource some of the other tasks.

The great thing is that tons of companies in Los Angeles see co-working spaces as an opportunity, and that’s great for them. Even companies like Merck, KPMG and many others are actively involved in using co-working spaces. So it’s safe to say that there’s a lot of interesting in using such working spaces, and it’s something that you will enjoy and appreciate quite a bit due to that.

How does this affect the rental prices?

Since we are talking about Los Angeles, the rental prices are still very high and they are not going to be lower anytime soon. There’s a huge demand for office spaces in the town, so companies that create co-working spaces are the right solution especially for smaller businesses that want to grow and which need to establish their own presence in the city.

An interesting thing about co-working spaces is that they also provide virtual addresses. That means customers or business partners can easily send inquiries or packages to the company and they will be received at the co-working space. It’s a great way to acquire a Los Angeles office address, and the best part is it costs way less than regular rent prices.

Do these co-working spaces replicate a traditional office?

In some ways they do, because you do have amenities and immediate access to features that are a part of any office. These include printers, scanners and any utilities needed by various companies. Some co-working spaces in Los Angeles have 3D printers too, not to mention they have small conference rooms too. So you can actually create or attend a conference in there without any problems.

You do have to wonder, who is the target for these co-working spaces? As we mentioned earlier, small companies and freelancers are extremely important for those persons that create co-working spaces. However, if we talk about the age range, most of the time the interested persons will be millennials. They are the ones that have lots of great ideas and which lack the funds to create a large business.

The co-working spaces in Los Angeles provide them with enough space to work on their projects, all while still being able to connect with other business professionals. However, you will also find older and more experienced business professionals and freelancers that work from the co-working spaces. They decided to opt for these co-working spaces because they offer more efficiency and a great way to generate leads and new business partners or attracting new clients.

As you can see, more and more co-working spaces are used in Los Angeles, and it’s a great thing to hear. Small and medium-sized businesses are actively focused on innovation, and they want to use all their income to grow and evolve. The last thing they want is to spend most of their money on rent, so the co-working spaces are very convenient for them!

Check out these 100 coworking spaces in LA.

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Santa Monica, Culver City, Venice, Hollywood, and beyond
LAStartups.com is a digital lifestyle publication that covers the culture of startups and technology companies in Los Angeles. It is the go-to site for people who want to keep up with what matters in Los Angeles’ tech and startups from those who know the city best.
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Santa Monica, Culver City, Venice, Hollywood, and beyond
LAStartups.com is a digital lifestyle publication that covers the culture of startups and technology companies in Los Angeles. It is the go-to site for people who want to keep up with what matters in Los Angeles’ tech and startups from those who know the city best.

Can You Measure Software Developer Productivity?

Can You Measure Software Developer Productivity?

The cost of software development kills innovation by limiting resources available to solve problems

THE PRODUCTIVITY DILEMMA

Let’s face it – software development is expensive.  Really expensive.  It’s not hard to understand why – software development is a complicated and still-maturing industry, and as the sector grows, it actually gets more complicated, not less, because of the acceleration of changes in technologies, programming languages, and toolsets.

As a technology consultant, one who is paid to help build expensive, complex systems, I should be happier than a fanboy on a Fortnite bender about this trend, right?  Wrong – it frustrates me a great deal.  My job is to solve problems and build things that people need, and that gets harder when funding becomes a challenge for our clients.

So here’s the question I’ve been grappling with – how can we make software development more productive to reduce costs?

There are lots of things our industry has done over the preceding decades to tackle this problem:

  • Developed working methodologies to build repeatable practices – Waterfall, Unified Process, Agile, XP, etc.
  • Created design patterns to solve common problems – MVC, SOLID, GoF, and many others
  • Leveraged lower cost resources through offshoring

None of these have been a panacea.  Look at any enterprise and you’ll find competing for SDLC methodologies, loose adherence to design practices, and the common efficiency roadblocks due to offshoring.  While these efforts have been helpful in managing cost, it is very difficult to measure the effect they have really had.

MEASURING PRODUCTIVITY

What to do, then?  More than anything, the focus of productivity has to start with the most human element of all – the individual developer herself.  The focus has to be on how to increase the speed that a developer can turn a designed solution into working code with as few errors as possible.

Anyone who has been in the software industry knows there are broad ranges in developers’ productivity.   It depends on the individual’s ability to understand programming theory, their educational background, years of experience, a personal situation at the time, how much Fortnite they play, etc.

Why is this important?  Quite simply, time is money.  The longer it takes a developer to code a solution, the more it costs.  In today’s environment of nearly full employment, demand for software developers has never been higher, which brings a lot of varied talent into the picture to meet the demand.  Anyone who has hired a developer knows the productivity gap I’m talking about – hiring is an expensive proposition and no matter how much interviewing you do, and you’re never sure what sort of productivity you’ll get until that person gets to work.

Why is measuring productivity so hard?  Because a good measurement involves an apples-to-apples comparison between developers, yet they will almost never complete the same task to produce the same set of code.  Since every development task is different, we cannot establish a baseline for how long it SHOULD take to perform a task versus how long it WILL take a specific developer.  Throw in each person’s differing levels of experience, education, and general abilities with the discipline, and…you get the picture.

Does that mean we’re stuck with technical interviews, coding tests, and answered prayers to create a team of highly productive software engineers?  Not quite.  Agile practices give us an opportunity to solve the biggest challenge in measuring developer productivity – creating a baseline to measure the variance between the estimated and actual time to perform a coding task.

HOW IT WORKS

Every ALM tool – Jira, or otherwise – allows a Scrum team to create story sub-tasks during their planning sessions.  Usually, a developer assigned to a sub-task has an opportunity to estimate the time it should take to complete that task, measured in hours.  During the sprint, developers can then track the actual hours spent so the team can evaluate the variance between estimated and actual hours.

This variance isn’t particularly helpful as a productivity metric because the individual developer may be much faster or slower than the average, and their estimations likely reflect this bias.

The solution to this problem is to have all the developers on the Scrum team estimate each subtask duration, creating a proxy baseline and a more reasonable expectation of the task’s duration.  Then, once a task is assigned to the individual developer, the variance calculations can start to have some meaning.

What meaning are we to glean from this variance? When looking at large sets of variances (hundreds or thousands of tasks over multiple projects), we can observe patterns in individual developers’ productivity.  If they consistently take longer to complete a task than the established baseline, we can look more deeply at the data to find root causes and potential remediations.  Is there a skills mismatch, allocation mismatch, or something else?  Does the developer need more pair programming or training in specific areas?

If a developer consistently performs tasks in less time than the estimations, we have hard metrics to reward that individual and encourage continued productivity.  We can also look at the data to see how we might have other developers emulate good behaviors from these high performers.

IMPLICATIONS

I know I know – I can hear the complaints now.  A small group of 2-4 developers on a Scrum team estimating a task cannot be used as a valid baseline, you say.  It’s a fair point, but any leftover estimation bias from a small sample size of developers would be offset by the volume of variance data we would collect.  As a manager, I care more about the variance trends and less about the exactness of anyone variance calculation.

But wait, you say.  All of this supposes a developer will be truthful in reporting their actual duration on a task.  People lie to themselves and others all the time (just read “Everybody Lies” by Seth Stephens-Davidowitz) – if a developer knows they’ll be measured on variance, they’ll manipulate their actuals to improve their perceived productivity.

Again, fair point, but there is a self-policing solution to this problem.  An employee is generally expected to work 8 hours a day.  If a developer consistently under-reports their actual durations on a task, it would appear they were consistently working less than they should be.

Say a developer is assigned two 4-hour tasks, and he takes 1 day to complete both but only reports 2 hours of actual duration for each task.  We would see a report that shows him only working 4 hours that day.  With enough data points, we could easily spot a trend of under-reporting and take corrective action.

CONCLUSION

Why is all of this important?  As individuals, not just employees, we should all strive to improve ourselves every day.  That’s how society is supposed to work – we do things, we make mistakes, we learn from them and we grow in the process.  But we can’t improve what we can’t measure.  The method I describe is very easy to implement, as long as your team is following the Scrum ceremonies.  With simple metrics and trend analysis, maybe we can finally solve a difficult problem and leave ourselves more time to knock a few more things of that ever-growing to-do list.

Chad Hahn
Author Details
Optimity Advisors, Inc.
Chad Hahn is a partner overseeing the digital & technology practice at Optimity Advisors. He is an entrepreneur with 20 years of experience in strategy, business development, operations, and technology, and has started and sold two successful service businesses. He has a strong background in software engineering and enterprise architecture, with deep expertise in both traditional and emerging technologies.
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Chad Hahn
Optimity Advisors, Inc.
Chad Hahn is a partner overseeing the digital & technology practice at Optimity Advisors. He is an entrepreneur with 20 years of experience in strategy, business development, operations, and technology, and has started and sold two successful service businesses. He has a strong background in software engineering and enterprise architecture, with deep expertise in both traditional and emerging technologies.

GOAT is Seeking 11 Full-Time Engineers in its LA Office

GOAT is Seeking 11 Full-Time Engineers in LA

Founded in 2015 and based in Los Angeles, GOAT is the largest marketplace for buying and selling authentic sneakers. Whether you’re looking to buy rare sneakers, discover new ones, or earn money by listing sneakers you already own, GOAT is your destination.

GOAT is backed by some of the leading names in venture capital including Accel Partners, Andreessen Horowitz, Ashton Kutcher, Guy Oseary, Matrix Partners, NEA, SV Angel, Upfront Ventures and Y Combinator.

Located in the heart of Culver City, California; shared by multiple sources, GOAT is one of the best (and coolest) places to work in LA right now.

Awesome Perks:

  • Medical, dental and vision coverage
  • Daily catered lunches from LA’s best restaurants
  • Unlimited vacation and sick days
  • Competitive salary and generous equity grants

GOAT is currently seeking 11 full-time engineering talent in its LA office.

  1. Android Engineer – Seeking a product-driven Android Engineer with a strong appreciation for great design not only in products and visual presentation but also in code and technical architecture.
  2. Engineering Manager – Seeking an experienced Engineering Manager to lead a team of exceptional software engineers. You will play a key role in inspiring and driving the efforts of the engineering team to deliver the highest priority features in the quickest way possible while managing technical risk and quality.
  3. iOS Engineer – Seeking a proven experience engineer building and launching high-quality iOS apps and is excited about researching new methods or technologies that improve the architecture, user experience or engineering process.
  4. Lead Software Engineer (Golang/Microservices) – Seeking a lead engineer to coordinate and communicate across teams that span several areas of the business, including mobile, web, retail, and fulfillment Tackle large projects related to deconstructing a Rails using composable microservices and serverless components.
  5. Senior Android Engineer – Seeking a product-driven Senior Android Engineer with a strong appreciation for great design not only in products and visual presentation but also in code and technical architecture. As an early member of the engineering team, you’ll collaborate cross-functionally with product design, marketplace ops, analytics and more to ensure a solid end-to-end strategy and execution.
  6. Senior Backend Engineer – Seeking an experienced Senior Engineer to help design and implement new features across multiple backend applications. As a senior presence and a core individual contributor on a small team, you will play a key role in both enhancing a Ruby on Rails backend at the heart of the business and building out a new, more scalable service-driven architecture.
  7. Senior Frontend Engineer – Seeking a Senior Frontend Engineer to build unique websites that support both our power users and our everyday customers. Develop single page applications in React and other best in class JavaScript libraries.
  8. Senior Golang Engineer – Seeking an experienced Senior Engineer to help design and implement new features across multiple backend applications. As a senior presence and a core individual contributor on a small team, you will play a key role in mapping the expanding needs of the business into innovative technical solutions within a highly scalable and event-driven architecture.
  9. Senior iOS Engineer – Seeking a Senior Engineer who has proven experience building and launching high-quality iOS apps and is excited about researching new methods and technologies that improve the architecture, user experience or engineering process. Work with team to troubleshoot, debug, and fix issues in production and non-production environments.
  10. Senior Ruby on Rails Engineer – Seeking an experienced Senior Engineer to help design and implement new features across multiple backend applications. As a senior presence and a core individual contributor on a small team, you will play a key role in both enhancing a Ruby on Rails backend at the heart of the business and building out a new, more scalable service-driven architecture. Make technical decisions that improve the codebase while minimizing riskIdentify and fix (or, ideally, avoid) bugs and performance bottlenecks.
  11. Senior Software Architect (Golang/Microservices) – Seeking a Senior Software Architect to coordinate and communicate across teams that span several areas of the business, including mobile, web, retail, and fulfillment. Tackle large projects related to deconstructing a Rails using composable microservices and serverless components. Enhance the existing backend systems to improve overall aspects related to high-traffic mobile and web applications. Identify current and future performance bottlenecks and bugs through simulated load-testing and chaos engineering concepts

Congrats with the success Eddy!

More about GOAT

Author Details
Santa Monica, Culver City, Venice, Hollywood, and beyond
LAStartups.com is a digital lifestyle publication that covers the culture of startups and technology companies in Los Angeles. It is the go-to site for people who want to keep up with what matters in Los Angeles’ tech and startups from those who know the city best.
×
Santa Monica, Culver City, Venice, Hollywood, and beyond
LAStartups.com is a digital lifestyle publication that covers the culture of startups and technology companies in Los Angeles. It is the go-to site for people who want to keep up with what matters in Los Angeles’ tech and startups from those who know the city best.