Tablets and Smartphones appear to be dominating the market place and competition is becoming as fierce as the war between Radio, Television, and Movies in the 1950’s. Marketing groups are seriously examining and reaching out to that 18-34 demographic that usually mark business trends into the future.
The Millennial Generation — also known as Gen Y or the WE Generation — is the new demographic that businesses compete to attract. Millennials fall into the age 18-29 brackets, reaching their teens at dawn of the 21st century. This is the generation for whom the PC and Mac were always a reality. MP3 players, particularly iPods and iPhones, have been necessities instead of options.
According to surveys conducted by the Pew Research Center, the millennials are better educated and less employed than previous generations. From the way they were raised to their views on marriage, Pew found, Millennials are a world apart from their elders. For example, 61% grew up in a two-parent household, a smaller percentage than the three previous generations. And just 21% are married (half the percentage of their parents’ generation at the same ages) and 34% are parents. 38% have a tattoo (and half of those with tattoos have two to five; 18% have six or more). But 72% say clothing hides them. 41% use only a cellphone and have no landline whatsoever.
This group is being guided into a revolution that plans to make more changes than we’ve ever seen. With technology, electronics, and mobility offering new marketing opportunities, there are concerns that the Millennial generation may not make the impact on business as in previous years.
A more recent study by the Barkley Marketing Group indicates some more unique findings. Millennials are more likely to use m-commerce (mobile commerce) than members of previous generations but average orders are usually $5 or less.
With 5000 respondents to the Barley survey, there are some provocative changes in behavior patterns. If you consider TV viewing, for example, only 26% respond to watching TV more than 15 hours per week. 42%, however, don’t watch TV on a TV. They use a PC and may watch more than 20 hours per week. For them, the TV has been replaced by multimedia networking http://www.jr.com/product/productListing.jsp?N=75900 .
When female Millennials were asked a series of questions about where they purchase fashion brands, it became clear that if store associates do not know the trends or look the part, Millennials are far less likely to be drawn in by the store. Millennials demand more knowledgeable and fashionable sales-associates (29 percent versus 19 percent) while Non-Millennials value sales associates who know to apply discounts and offer promotions (65 percent versus 51 percent).
It appears likelier that middle-class children born this year will be more mobile literate and educators feel that written communication will eventually phase out in lieu of faster keyboarding.
The survey’s results are being announced preceding a conference that Barkley is hosting – the Share.Like.Buy. conference September 22-23, 2011, in San Francisco, California.
It is likely that political trends and larger population behavior may shift many of these behaviors over the next 10 years, especially when millennials decide to raise families and attempt the responsibilities that go along with Middle Class responsibilities and commitments.
Each generation has challenges and adversities. In the 1960’s, protests were lodged against wars and academic discontent. In 2010, protests are developing for more liberties and economic opportunities. For now, the telescope aims on the Millennials and their effect on the future. Ultimately, the world is getting better.