Monthly Archives

November 2016

Why Do Millennials Block Ads?

By | Acumen Insights

According to a report from Unruly, Millennials are more than twice as likely to share video ads than any other demographic. Yet while these 18 to 21 year-old digital natives are more likely to enjoy and share video ads than any other internet users, they are also the generation most likely to install ad blockers and put video ads on mute. This digital-savvy age group is highly turned off by poor quality advertising. Approximately 93 percent reported considering ad blocking software in the future. The key reasons Millennials gave for considering using ad blockers were overabundance of ads (58.9 percent), repetitiveness of ads (49.4 percent) and invasive nature of ads (43.1 percent).

The study found four out of every five Millennials will mute a brand’s video ads, and are the demographic most likely to do so. Furthermore, Millennials demand authenticity from brands; 74 percent said they lose trust in a brand if an ad feels artificial. Happiness and inspiration are the emotions that resonate best with Millennials, who are 27 percent more likely to feel happy and 25 percent more likely to feel inspired when watching video ads. Finally, Millennial men are the most emotional demographic when watching video ads. They experience various emotional responses including: happiness, arousal, pride and inspiration, exhilaration, amazement, knowledge and shock.




Trends in Millennial Hispanic Grocery Shopping

By | Acumen Insights

A study from Nielsen showed Millennials are more “multicultural” than any previous generation. In the U.S., approximately 40 percent of the generation identified themselves as Hispanic, African-American or Asian American. And over a quarter of all U.S. Millennials said they are first or second generation immigrants, many of whom have strong ties to their global origins. This diversity is shifting their attitudes—71 percent of all Millennials said they appreciate the influence of other cultures on American way of life. This multiculturalism is also shaping their consumer habits—from brand loyalty and product purchasing to language and media usage.

To better understand how the influence of other cultures affects Millennial shopping habits, a recent Nielsen study focused on the largest Millennial multicultural group—Hispanic Millennials. This group makes up more than half of all multicultural Millennials (21 percent of the generation’s total U.S. population). And some markets have an even higher concentration of young Hispanic consumers. For example, one quarter of Los Angeles’ population is Millennial, and half of these young consumers are Latino.

When it comes to grocery preferences, Latino Millennials are true to their heritage, attracted to smell, taste and familiarity. At the national level, 61 percent of Hispanic Millennials said they have shopped at Hispanic supermarkets at least once over the past year. But while these young Latinos value their roots, they are also open to other cultures—22 percent have shopped at an Asian supermarket. Language plays a key role in whether these young Latinos shop culturally specific stores. As would be expected, the majority of Spanish-dominant and bilingual Hispanic Millennials across the U.S. have shopped at Hispanic groceries. But almost half of English-dominant Hispanic Millennials have also visited these stores. English-dominant Hispanic Millennials’ desire to shop at Hispanic groceries stores—despite language barriers—also reflects this generation’s openness to different cultures.

Streaming Most Popular on Mobile Devices

By | Acumen Insights

A report from Deloitte Consulting examining media consumption behavior found Millennials spend nearly 50 percent of their time watching movies and TV shows on devices. The study found Millennials now spend more time streaming video content than watching live TV. Nearly 20 percent of Millennials’ TV/movie viewing time is now on mobile devices (i.e., smartphones and tablets). Long-form and short-form content are both being watched on mobile devices. Looking at how respondents consume media, Deloitte’s report revealed that more than 80 percent of Millennials binge watch TV content. Among those, nearly a third of consumers binge watch shows weekly.

The study shows that overall, consumers are using apps less frequently on their tablets than on smartphones, and social media remains the top smartphone and tablet app for both Millennials and Xers. A variety of smartphone apps are becoming more popular among the generations; 33 percent of Millennials age 19 to 25 are using mobile payment apps daily/weekly, just as frequently as photo/video apps, and far more than fitness/health apps. All generations, except the youngest Millennials, are using banking apps more than retail/shopping, fitness/health, and photo/video apps.

The Identity Crisis of Middle Class Millennials

By | Acumen Insights

Millennials see themselves as less middle class and more working class than any other generation in recent years, the Guardian and Ipsos Mori found. Analyzing social survey data spanning 34 years revealed that only about a third of adults aged 18 to 35 think they are part of the U.S. middle class. Meanwhile 56.5 percent of this age group described themselves as working class. The number of Millennials that described themselves as middle class has fallen in almost every survey conducted every other year, dropping from 45.6 percent in 2002 to a record low of 34.8 percent in 2014. In 2014, the eight percent of Millennials considered themselves to be lower class and less than one percent considered themselves to be upper class. The last time almost as many people from any other generation described themselves as working class was in 1982, when 56.1 percent of Baby Boomers chose this label. That year, the oldest Boomers were in their late 30s, Ronald Reagan was in his second year of office, and Time magazine celebrated the advent of the personal computer.

Younger Consumers Want Seamless Device Crossover

By | Acumen Insights

Today’s consumers want the experience from desktop to mobile to tablet to flow smoothly, and they definitely notice when this fails. A study released from Adobe and reported by Ad Week explores the cross-device preferences of consumers, finding that 66 percent of device owners get frustrated when content is not synchronized across devices. What is the biggest cross-device group? Millennials. Adobe found that 90 percent of Millennials polled switch devices mid-activity—higher than Gen X (76 percent) and those 55 and older (58 percent). When shopping, 20 percent of consumers said they switch devices (this figure is 34 percent among Millennials).

On average, consumers use 3.1 devices (of their total 7.2 devices) daily. Millennials have 7.7 devices, using an average of 3.3 daily. Smartphone ownership was the most popular device, at 92 percent. Further, 26 percent told Adobe that they own two or more smartphones. With so many touch points, personalization can be a monumental task. Yet consumers want a personalized experience regardless of device. In exchange for this personalized experience, Adobe found customers are more willing to part with personal data; 90 percent of device owners polled said they would be comfortable sharing at least one piece of information about themselves to improve their experience. Demographically, 94 percent of Millennials would do this, 98 percent of Gen X and 86 percent of those 55 or older.

Gen Z Most Open When It Comes to Gender and Sex

By | Acumen Insights

According to a report by trend forecasting agency J. Walter Thompson Innovation Group, young Americans aged 13 to 20 years old (also known as “Generation Z”) are far more open-minded than their older millennial counterparts when it comes to issues of gender and sexuality. As covered by Broadly, the research found 48 percent of Gen Zs identify as exclusively heterosexual, compared to 65 percent of Millennials aged 21 to 34. On a scale of zero to six, where zero signified “completely straight” and six meant “completely homosexual,” more than a third of the young demographic chose a number between one and five, indicating that they were bisexual to some degree. Only 24 percent of their older counterparts identified themselves in this way.

Fifty six percent of 13- to 20-year-olds said that they knew someone who went by gender neutral pronouns compared to 43 percent of people aged 28 to 34 years old. Over a third of Gen Z respondents also strongly agreed that gender did not define a person as much as it used to in the past. This figure was 23 percent among Millennials who were 28 and up. Those belonging to Generation Z also rejected the gender binary while shopping—only 44 percent said they always bought clothes designed for their own gender, versus 54 percent of Millennials. Further, they felt strongly that public spaces should provide access to gender neutral bathrooms, with 70 percent of Gen Zs supportive of this compared to 57 percent of 21 to 34-year-olds.

Millennials, A Generation of “Travel Hackers”

By | Acumen Insights

Always-connected, highly-mobile Millennials are forging new norms for the travel business. Travel company Hipmunk polled U.S. travelers of all ages to find out more about travel habits. The poll revealed that Millennials do more business travel than any other age group. Specifically, 28 percent of Millennials travel for business, while just 23 percent of Gen Xers and eight percent of Boomers do. Millennials consider themselves to be savvy travelers. Fifty percent said they consider themselves to be a “travel hacker” who can work the system to get deals, while 54 percent said they use a credit card to earn hotel points or miles.

Many Millennials get travel ideas from social media. Forty-four percent of Millennials get travel inspiration from YouTube videos and 28 percent from Instagram. However, only 18 percent of Gen Xers and six percent of Boomers turn to YouTube, and seven percent and one percent of Gen Xers and Boomers turn to Instagram, respectively.

Millennials will go the extra mile or pay a premium to remove friction points that make travel frustrating. They are more likely to use pre-check services like TSA/Clear. Approximately 31 percent of Millennials said they will do so this year, versus 24 percent of Gen Xers and 23 percent of Boomers. Millennials also lead the way in preferring vacation rentals over hotels. Forty four percent of that generation said they would opt for Airbnb-style accommodations on their leisure trips over a hotel; only 23 percent of Gen Xers and 11 percent of Boomers feel the same way. This preference also extends to business travel.

Why Are Millennials Not Investing?

By | Acumen Insights

Millennials, the biggest generation with over 75 million people, are choosing not to invest. To better understand why, Stash partnered with Harris Poll and conducted a survey of Americans (age 18 to 34). Of all the Millennials surveyed, 79 percent said they do not invest. Of Millennial women, 85 percent said they do not invest. So what is preventing Millennials from investing? Sixty nine percent of Millennials and 76 percent of female Millennials find investing confusing with all the fancy jargon and overly complex charts. Additionally, Millennials are turned off by investing because they think it takes a lot of cash. Forty one percent of participants felt they do not have enough money to invest in the stock market at this time and 70 percent felt they need at least $100 to start investing, while 38 percent felt they need at least $1,000. Furthermore, Millennials have been alienated by Wall Street practices. As a result, one third of Millennials (37 percent) said they would trust a payment app more than a traditional investment firm with their money. Finally, Millennials want choice, but not too much. Ninety percent said if they were to invest in the stock market, it would be important or very important for them to decide on companies or funds in which to invest their money.

Is “Free-From” Food Retail’s Latest Buzzword?

By | Acumen Insights

For many consumers, the term “free-from” indicates healthier alternatives to traditional fare. A report from Mintel as reported by Supermarket News found Gen Y consumers, particularly Millennial-aged mothers, are interested in products with “clean” labels and foods that lack artificial additives and ingredients. This generation of shoppers equates “health” with simpler product formulations and free-from claims. The study found 60 percent of millennial consumers (age 18 to 38) agreed they “worry quite a bit about harmful ingredients” in the food they buy. For the oldest consumers studied (age 70+), only 35 percent said they worry quite a bit about harmful ingredients in their foods. Fifty five percent of Generation X individuals (age 39 to 50) and 46 percent of Baby Boomers (age 51 to 69) said they worried about their food’s composition.

The report found that for younger shoppers and shoppers with children in the household, the elimination of chemically complex or unnatural ingredients was even more important than the addition of healthy ingredients. The research found millennial moms were more concerned than millennial dads. When asked why they buy foods with free-from claims, 50 percent of millennial-aged mothers said they wanted to avoid unnecessary ingredients, versus 30 percent of millennial-aged fathers. Likewise, 45 percent of millennial-aged mothers said they buy the products because they are healthier, versus 37 percent of millennial-aged fathers.

Lifestyles of the Best and Brightest Millennials

By | Acumen Insights

Upwardly mobile Millennials are a sought-after demographic for marketers and advertisers, so when Forbes publishes its 30 Under 30 list, many take note. This year, Forbes went further and surveyed approximately 500 Millennials—all nominees on the list—to gain insight into this demographic group’s beliefs, habits and communication preferences. As reported by Adweek, when asked about the most important attribute when buying from a brand, 42 percent of Millennials said quality is the most important. Other key attributes included: personality fit (26 percent) and value for the money (24 percent). When asked where they do most of their shopping, 65 percent said online on their laptops, 10 percent said online via mobile, and 25 percent said in person. With regard to how they spend their money (outside of rent and housing), Millennials said they spend on dining out (45 percent) and travel (31 percent). Interestingly, just over half (53 percent) said their biggest financial regret is not saving enough money.

Looking at other questions, the study revealed Millennials were relatively divided on larger-scale issues. When asked what they felt was the largest problem facing the world today, 27 percent said global warming, 24 percent said terrorism, and 22 percent said the economy/recession. Despite these concerns, 97 percent said they are optimistic about the future, and 80 percent said they believe in the American Dream.