The U.S. Army is employing new tactics to attract Gen Z amidst stagnant recruitment numbers.
The "What’s Your Warrior?" campaign is designed to address several roadblocks that the Army is facing when it comes to recruiting Gen Z in particular.
According to Brigadier General Alex Fink, the Army’s CMO, one of the biggest recruitment challenges that he sees today is a lack of knowledge about the more than 150 unique careers that the Army offers, far beyond combat roles.
"Gen Z, and other generations as well are often unaware of the full depth of opportunities that the army offers," Fink told Campaign.
"And in the past we’ve even reinforced some of those misconceptions with a focus on the combat roles that you can hold in the Army."
"Now we want people to realize that there a breadth of opportunities available," he said.
The campaign by DDB, which has launched its first chapter (one of many, according to Fink) features some of the positions that those in the Army can play, from scientific to combat roles.
"This first ad is talking about some of the traditional roles, like the aviator - no one wathcing is going to be surprised about that, but they may be surprised by some of the others," Fink said.
The campaign, which was created with Gen Z in mind, won’t just live on traditional media channels either, Fink explained.
"We really need to recognize where Gen Z is in terms of their consumption of media. This is a part of our campaign, and will be much different than what we’ve had in the past," he said. "We’re going to be in sports advertising, cable, digital, streaming audio, social media and more."
The campaign will be separated into chapters, focusing first on the Army as an overall team and reflecting Gen Z’s desire to be a part of something bigger than themselves. Later chapters will focus on individual soldiers and their stories.
"The individual component will allow us to clear up some of the misconceptions that people may have about the Army, and also allow us to directly answer people’s questions," Fink said.
The chapter driven narrative is reminiscent of the way modern television shows are formatted, he noted.
The campaign has launched with both an English and Spanish speaking component, which is part of the Army’s goal to be as diverse as America in terms of geography, ethnicity and gender as possible, said Fink.