Invest in “Now”: We Introduced Generation Z to Startups
Establishing that precious communication between companies and their customers is what we are all about as Pisano team. So, it is completely natural for us to have a strong bond with our own customers while working for such a purpose. And it is this bond that helped us prepare the perfect New Year’s present for our customers.
Let’s be honest: We did think about sending our customers a New Year’s present like flowers, chocolates or agendas (so creative… not). But these gifts are not special. They do not last forever. They cannot possibly represent the strong emotional bond we share with our customers. We wanted to give our customers a lasting and valuable gift just like last year. Last year we actually adopted a dolphin on behalf of our customers. The bar was set high.
So, we thought hard. And we came up with this idea: Let’s introduce high schoolers to our startup world and teach them all we know while learning what our present customers from different sectors actually mean for Generation Z., For 6 weeks, we shared our experiences and knowledge with 24 high school students. And in return, they told us what they think about you, the enterprises.
We collaborated with one of the most influential education volunteer associations in Turkey — 1 Genç 1 Gelecek (1G1G, Future Project for Youngsters). They inspire students to be proactive in their high school education, to become role models for their surroundings, and to grow into well-balanced adults who can accomplish anything they work for.During these 6 weeks, the students learned step-by-step how to turn an idea into a startup. In the first week’s lecture, Özkan and Mike, Pisano’s cofounders, explained how to find and organize an idea , in the first week. For the second week’s lecture, problems a startup may encounter during the financing process were discussed.
In the third week, Pisano’s art director Fehmi and cofounder Emir explained how the concept and design process progressed while developing the product. The head of our development team Omur showed how the software development part should be done with examples in the fourth week’s lecture.
Marketing and sales through online and offline channels were the topics of the fifth week. In sixth and last week’s lecture, we talked about customer success and customer support issues. After the last lecture, the students split up into two groups and presented their own ideas on how the process would proceed if they had founded Snapchat, Salesforce, Sony, Airbnb, McDonald’s, or Ford. They acted as true founders of these companies and went through the entire process from the beginning to the end. Some of them even went ahead and incorporated their own product ideas. Students who had the chance to express their own ideas received feedback from the Pisano team and other students. They were all brilliant; so, picking the best team that will be given a chance to do a short internship during the winter break with us wasn’t an easy decision
During this program, students got the chance to experience what they might go through as they develop a product. They also met with real people with real experienced in the sector. Think about it, how many of us get to have this chance in high school?
Our pupils and their friends taught us a lot too. During this program, we conducted a sector-based digital survey with high school students via 1G1G network. We know how important it is to know high school students’ views since they are literally the future consumers. Businesses know this as well, so this research carries extreme importance. For this reason, we have shared the answers we got from the students with our customers in the New Year’s greeting cards we sent them. We’re going to share them here with you too.
Young people think that retail stores are not evenly distributed in every province in Turkey.
As a solution to this, they want to improve online shopping. In the future, the retail sector should expect a supplier range that is not just limited to Turkey.
Young people mostly complain about the high prices of drinks in the restaurant sector. They also expect a more tech-friendly and warm atmosphere in the future. For example, they want to feel like they are at home and they want to use digital menus.
Young people expect a more natural atmosphere from the hotel industry. They want hotels to offer cultural and entertaining activities that will not be easily forgotten by its guests.
Young people find the petroleum industry’s prices very expensive. But they are aware of the reasons for these prices.
As a solution, they think that alternative and renewable energy sources should be invested in more. They are also quite happy with the employees in the fuel stations.
Youngsters find shopping centers to be very functional. But, they also think stores are a bit too tiny. In addition, they state that sunlight should enter the building instead of artificial lights.
The answers about the health sector show that youngsters worry about equal treatment for everyone.
The most popular feature of the market sector is that they are accessible from anywhere for consumers. Future markets are expected to create solutions for long lines.
Young people want the sector to make structures suitable for urban planning without harming nature. However, in the future, the construction sector is expected to adjust its prices to be more budget-friendly and the number of durable structures to increase.
Young people mostly complain about the prices and crowded vehicles in this sector They think people should prefer public transportation. Airlines should also pick up the slack. They also say that the transport industry needs to improve their mobile apps.
Our young respondents think there should be more campaigns for young people and that these campaigns should be announced on a wider scale. For future banking, they want a safer online shopping experience and a more convenient mobile banking experience.
It is very great that young people aged 15–19 who live in Turkey are aware of the socio- economic situation of the country they live in. That next generation of consumers will be conscious and they will put a great deal of responsibility on the business. Once again, we understand that the importance of customer experience transformation will be greater.
As the Pisano family, we would like to thank the 1G1G team and all the inspiring young people who supported us for such a project. We wish everyone a very happy new year.