American society has been experiencing unique challenges since 2020, which are complicating an already difficult military recruiting environment. Associated political-cultural shifts are having a significant impact on both the demand and supply of new military recruits. The challenge for the Marine Corps is to make what Marines do aspirational to this new generation of recruitable youth. MCRC’s ongoing Generation Z research suggests that while they are anxious and pressured about the future, they are also optimistic and committed to bettering it.


The Marine Corps’ enduring and versatile brand messaging strategy focuses on fighting and winning battles, in whatever form they take. All recruiting narratives reflect this message, which allows Marines to communicate the most essential, differentiating characteristics about themselves and the Corps.


The new recruitment campaign “Shifting Threats” reveals the uncertainty threatening our Nation’s future. Threats appear and evolve rapidly and continuously. Every generation faces conflict, but with so much at stake, the need to defeat these threats has never felt more urgent. And this generation faces a dilemma: while they worry about their individual futures, they are concerned about our collective future too. It is this generation that must feel compelled to author our unwritten future.


"Shifting Threats" is a fully integrated campaign ecosystem to help drive prospect-aged youth from awareness of the Marine Corps, to consideration of the Corps as a future life path, to converting those who might possess the mental, physical, and moral fortitude to talk to a Marine recruiter.

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