To stay relevant for this forthcoming generation of consumers, brands should understand how to re-connect with Gen Yers. The second you tell a Millennial you are cool, you can be very sure that, well, you are not. They decide themselves what’s cool. It’s not a characteristic you can deliberately plan or chase. You have to earn this critical and marketing savvy generation’s respect.
Indeed from the long list of 33 different characteristics that could be attributed to products and brands, the 15- to 25-year-olds in InSites Consulting’s 16 country genY study haven’t just picked ‘coolness’ for their top 10.
It’s not that coolness is not important to them. A brand’s coolness is a result from a complex mixture of attributes rather than something they buy from the counter. But although favourite youth brands differ regionally, for example in clothing retail it would be Top Shop in the UK, Zara in Spain or G-Star Raw in the Netherlands, when Gen Yers talk about their beloved brands, they universally share the same attributes. To be embraced by the new generation of consumers, brands should have their own style (35%) and deliver positive emotional experiences (31%) while staying up-to-date (28%).
Some characteristics are more important in certain parts of the world but the top ranked items remain the same. Being up-to-date is of greater importance in the USA and Russia. A clean reputation scored higher in Russia and China and more Chinese youngsters were highly involved with authentic and spiritual brands. In Brasil and India brands should also provide a safe feeling and in the first country ecological engagement is strongly approved