Evie Barrett
Jun 19, 2022

Edelman hires Gen Z cohort and appoints ‘ZEO’

Edelman’s ‘Gen Z lab’ will employ 100 under-25s, in order to offer insight into the Gen Z consumer mindset.

Fashion designer Harris Reed will take on the role of 'ZEO.'
Fashion designer Harris Reed will take on the role of 'ZEO.'

Overseen by Edelman’s global chief brand officer, Jackie Cooper, the offering will “lend expertise, perspective and counsel clients looking to effectively engage the Gen Z consumer”, aiming to evoke change on issues such as diversity, sustainability and climate change.

Cooper said: “We need to understand what moves Gen Z and what loses them. We must have people within this generation to guide us.”

Gender fluid fashion designer Harris Reed will serve as the division’s ‘ZEO’ from July, acting as a “cultural and creative adviser”. 

He said: “It has been my dream to make a material difference with big companies in a meaningful way. I’m excited to work with Edelman’s Gen Z team collectively to help Edelman’s clients understand where the opportunities are, while ensuring that they have the agility, creativity, and cultural relevance to deliver impact for real change and understanding.”

Amanda Edelman, daughter of agency founder Richard Edelman, will take up the role of Gen Z COO.

The global Gen Z lab is set to contain a roster of internal and external on-call advisers, and a data hub dedicated to generational insights. 

This launch comes as a result of Edelman’s The Power of Gen Z research study last year, which the agency says “produced enthusiastic demand from the firm’s C-suite clients who had expressed hesitancy around how to effectively market to Gen Z without triggering backlash”.

Richard Edelman said: “Our data identified the power of Gen Z to inspire and lead beyond their generation in the questions they pose to brands: how do you treat employees, what are you doing to help others, and how are you solving the world’s most glaring issues? With the lab, we are enabling Gen Z to lead the change they want to see in the world. This is a critical action that will drive trust with this generation.”

Earlier this week, Edelman broke the news that its multicultural practice had grown by 68 per cent in two years. It also announced the hire of a UK government comms strategist in its EMEA division.


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