< Back to BLOG

The truth about youth

Of course, there’s our book in which we’ve published a lot of information about generation Y. But there’s so much more to tell and there’s so much more research done. Last week we’ve come across this interesting piece of research done by McCann Worldgroup: The Truth about Youth. The study under 7000 youngsters tried to find out what motivates young people around the world today (“money? fame? justice?” ). The report states that millennials live in a new “social economy” in which recommending and sharing brands is front and center in their daily lives (via: Panorama).

Laura Simpson, Global IQ Director at McCann Worldwide about the study:

“What we saw is that technology is the great global unifier.  It is the glue that binds this generation together and fuels the motivations that define them. Young people utilize technology as a kind of supersense which connects them to infinite knowledge, friends and entertainment opportunities.”

The report consists of both a quantitative part and a qualitative part.  The quantitative research was conducted in US, UK, China, India, Spain, Mexico and Brazil. Qualitative research conducted in US, UK, China, India, Spain, Mexico, Brazil, Singapore, Malaysia, Chile, South Africa, Italy, Germany, Korea, Japan, Australia and the Philippines.
Give up senses for technology
The researchers at McCann asked the participants if they would give up one of their senses for the sake of keeping one or more technologies in reach. Here’s what they found:
“Given a list of things (including cosmetics, their car, their passport, their phone and their sense of smell) and told they could only save two, 53% of those aged 16-22 and 48% of those aged 23-30 would give up their own sense of smell if it meant they could keep an item of technology (most often their phone or laptop). We all know how important technology is to young people, but a willingness to sacrifice one of their human senses to keep it, shows just how intrinsic it has become.” 

Who are the Milennials

Social economy vs experience economy
The social economy (intense use of social media and belonging to several virtual networks, away from time and location) is replacing the experience economy. Respondents want to be remembered for their connections and their ability to broadcast via social media: that’s the new currency. In the report, Groupon is named as an example of a company that closely fits with the needs of young people. 

Race for friends
The study found, that there’s a huge diference in the way young people look at the number of connections on social media we have. In India, there’s a race going on between young people for the most connections and the most friends, while in the UK, it looks desperate if you have too many friends. Globally speaking, in all countries researched, the phenomenon of “fake friends” pops up: they are known as ‘stranger friends’ in India, ‘disposable friends’ in Singapore, ‘obligation friends’ in Australia and ‘recyclable friends’ in Chile.
Marketing take-aways
At Panorama.net, they’ve come up with the following marketing take-aways based on McCann’s report:
  • Brands should align their marketing efforts with what’s important to this generation.
  • Advertising should be genuine, truthful, sociable, mature, and humble in its efforts to create connections.
  • The biggest mistake marketers make is overestimating their own importance. Young consumers say they quickly tire of brands that fill up their social graphs with what they consider meaningless information.

[scribd id=56263899 key=key-1pjmt2xob0bzgv6zv7gp mode=list]

Posted in Stats