All Posts By

Nichole Becker

Best Practices for Mobile Video Ads

By | Acumen Insights

Collaborative research from Millward Brown, Tremor Video and IAB identified the most successful qualities of mobile video advertising. The research found consumers of all ages are sensitive to mobile ad clutter; 48 percent of those age 18-to-34 said they see too many ads on their smartphones, while 43 percent of those age 35-to-54 said the same. The device a mobile video is viewed on also affects reaction; while Millennials were equally likely to be impacted by smartphones and tablets, video ads were more effective on tablets when targeting consumers age 35-to-54. Regardless of age, tablet video can be an effective medium to drive consumers to take action; 43 percent were more likely to check out a brand after seeing a tablet ad, compared to 34 percent who were more likely to do the same after viewing the ad on a smartphone.

Ideal ad length varied by generation and screen; while 10-second videos maximized impact among Millennials, 30-second videos had the advantage with consumers 35-54. Yet long videos still might be appropriate for Millennials, because the study found trying to communicate too much in a few seconds lead to confusion and limited message takeaway.

Who is The Average Millennial?

By | Acumen Insights

An article from The Atlantic about a Bureau of Labor Statistics report says impressions of young people in the U.S. are warped. It says the word Millennial has become shorthand for “a college-educated young person living in a city,” but this definition isn’t grounded in reality; most people born between the early 1980s and late 1990s (a) didn’t graduate from college, (b) may not have a steady career, and (c) are not living in a city.

The article focused on the average 29-year-old in its analysis and found he has not graduated from college; he has completed “some college” but doesn’t have a bachelor’s degree. The metric differs by race and gender, with about one-third of whites having a four-year degree compared to around 20 percent for blacks and Hispanics. At age 29 one-third of women have a bachelor’s degree versus one-quarter of men, but men’s earnings are higher than women’s.

Median income at 29 years old is $35,000, but many are working in temporary positions. They work an average of seven jobs before age 29, with a third of these lasting less than six months. One might assume job-hopping and short-term employment is part of getting a career started, but Millennials at all education levels held an average of more than two jobs just between ages 25 and 28.

Gen Y’s In-Store Expectations

By | Acumen Insights

Research from Euclid in partnership with the Harris Poll reveals millennial consumers ages 18 to 34 want their shopping experiences to seamlessly integrate digital and in-store visits. In-store digital experiences are predicated on free Wi-Fi in stores, but it matter who visits the store because men and women differ in how they would use such a service.

Men seek convenience; 68 percent who own a smartphone or tablet say if a retailer offered guest Wi-Fi, they would be very or somewhat likely to use it for faster check-out. Men also say they’d be very or somewhat likely to use digital to access in-store services such as technical support, customer assistance, and order pick-up. Men more often than women also say they would be likely to use Wi-Fi to request help from a store associate, 53 percent vs. 42 percent. Women, on the other hand, want personalization. If a retailer offered guest Wi-Fi, 74 percent who own a smartphone or tablet would be very or somewhat likely to use digital for instant access to an exclusive gift, daily deal or coupon.

Pinterest Instead of Museums for Gen Y

By | Acumen Insights

Online marketplace Invaluable finds age is a major factor in how U.S. consumers discover and purchase art. For Millennials, social media channels such as Instagram and Pinterest are the preferred art discovery tool. Nearly half (44 percent) of Millennials age 18 to 24 and 34 percent of Millennials age 25 to 34 discover new art through social media; across all ages, 23 percent of Americans discover art through social media. An equal proportion discovers art through museums (21 percent) but fewer discover art at galleries (16 percent).

When it comes to purchasing art, Millennials say they would purchase art online (57 percent for age 18 to 24 and 52 percent for age 25 to 34), compared to only 19 percent of Baby Boomers. Roughly one in four Millennials age 18 to 24 prefer to purchase art through an online marketplace or website. And while findings reveal Millennials aren’t yet purchasing art in high volumes, they see long-term value in art; 42 percent of young Millennials and 37 percent of older Millennials believe art is a good investment, compared to roughly 32 percent of Baby Boomers.

Millennials Reject Capitalism

By | Acumen Insights

A poll from Harvard University reported by The Washington Post shows half of young people do not support capitalism. Among Millennials, those between the ages of 18 and 29, 51 percent of respondents do not support capitalism, while only 42 said they support it. A subsequent survey including people of all ages found older Americans also are skeptical of capitalism, with respondents 50 years and older the only age group that the majority supports capitalism.

Harvard’s findings concur with other recent research on how Americans think about capitalism and socialism. In 2011, the Pew Research Center found people ages 18 to 29 were frustrated with the free-market system. In that survey, 46 percent had positive views of capitalism and 47 percent had negative views — a broader question than what Harvard’s pollsters asked, which was whether the respondent supported the system. By contrast, 49 percent of the young people in Pew’s poll had positive views of socialism and 43 percent had negative views.

On questions about how best to organize the economy, the Harvard poll found young people’s views conflicted. Just 27 percent believe government should play a large role in regulating the economy and 30 percent think the government should play a large role in reducing income inequality. Only 26 percent said government spending is an effective way to increase economic growth, and 48 percent agreed basic health insurance is a right for all people; 47 percent agreed basic necessities, such as food and shelter, are a right the government should provide to those unable to afford them.

Branded Events Lure Millennials

By | Acumen Insights

Data from experiential marketing software Splash as reported by Ad Week shows the potential of “branded events” for generating buzz among Millennials. When asked if they had done various activities at a branded event,” 81 percent of Millennials said they had shared a photo on social, 71 percent said used the events hashtag on social, 67 percent said they followed the brand on social and 56 percent signed up for an email list. Furthermore, the study found 92 percent of Millennials would be open to receiving a personalized email offer from a brand following an event. Almost a third (29 percent) of Millennials expected some sort of recognition from a brand if they attend two or more sponsored events, and 64 say they did not expect a reward but that it would be nice. When it comes to giveaways, 24 percent said a water bottle was their favorite piece of swag ever received at an event, while 12 percent said a t shirt and 10 percent said a hat.

Additional research from music streaming service Pandora shows music events are particularly appealing for young consumers. Concerts (60 percent) and music festivals (32 percent) were in the top five most desired experiences for Gen Y and 73 percent said their main reasons for attending a brand sponsored event was the music or entertainment. Eighty-two percent said they have noticed a brand sponsoring a music event, and one in three had a more positive opinion of the brand after attending an event.

One-Third of Millennials Don’t Have Paid TV

By | Acumen Insights

Netflix, Amazon Video and Hulu are reaching the popularity level of paid TV according to a survey from Clearleap. Streaming services are on nearly equal ground in terms of market share; 71 percent of adult U.S. consumers say they have used a streaming service either currently or previously, and 79 percent say they currently subscribe to pay TV. Furthermore, the survey shows consumers are willing to pay more for streaming services; 43 percent say they would pay $10 to $25 a month, higher than current pricing for most streaming services.

The survey found Millennials in particular are leading the adoption of streaming services. Among those ages 18-29, more than 70 percent use a streaming service but only 64 percent have a paid TV subscription; 26 percent have never had paid TV as adults. Replacing paid TV for this age group are streaming video on laptops (58 percent) and watching video on smartphones (39 percent). About 30 percent use Internet connected TVs and tablets to stream video, while 22 percent use gaming consoles.

Gen Z Sees Gender Differently

By | Acumen Insights

A survey from The Innovation Group, as reported by J. Walter Thompson Intelligence, found the “gender binary” is less relevant for the younger generation. The survey found 56 percent of 13-to-20 year olds knew someone who went by gender-neutral pronounces such as “they,” them,” or “ze,” compared with 43 percent of people age 28-to-34 years old. Over a third of Gen Z respondents strongly agreed gender did not define a person as much as it used to, compared to 27 percent of Millennials.

Gen 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. For products such as shoes, clothes, deodorant, fragrance and sporting equipment Millennials were universally more inclined than Gen Z to buy products geared to their gender, particularly in the shoe category where 57 percent of Millennials reported buying gender specific shoes compared to only 39 percent of Gen Z.

Gen Z also felt public spaces should provide access to gender neutral bathrooms with 70 percent of Gen Z supporting this option compared to 57 percent of 21-to 34-year olds.

Millennial Media Behavior Differs by Life Stage

By | Acumen Insights

Encompassing those between the ages of 18 and 34, the generation known as Millennials has a wide array of differences based on life stage. Nielsen divided Millennials into three groups to study their media behaviors: Dependent Adult (living in someone else’s house), On Their Own (living in their own home without children), and Starting a Family (living in their own home with children).  Nielsen found 78 percent of On Their Own had subscription-based video on demand (such as Netflix and Hulu), higher than Dependent Adults (64 percent) and Starting a Family (58 percent). On Their Own also were more likely than the other groups to have multimedia devices, broadband Internet and laptops. Starting a Family were more likely to own DVRs (47 percent), DVD players (69 percent) and tablets (65 percent).

On Their Own had the lowest penetration of traditional sources of video (paid TV, working antenna) and spent the most time outside the home. They also watched the least amount of live TV (two hours and 6 minutes per day), had the highest penetration of multimedia devices and streaming services, and spent the greatest amount of time with TV-connected devices (1 hour and 32 minutes).

Starting a Family had greater penetration of paid TV than On Their Own (79% vs. 72%) and working antennas (14% vs. 12%). They also spent the most time at home of the three life stages. These factors mean Starting a Family watched the most live TV (three hours and 16 minutes per day) and made the greatest total use of a TV screen (four hours and 40 minutes).

Gen Y Digs Paper Coupons

By | Acumen Insights

A study from Valassis examines shopping behavior across generations and found only slight differences in coupon use based on age. Coupon use remains high, with 90 percent of consumers reporting they use coupons. Print remains highly relevant to coupon usage with 87 percent of all consumers using coupons they receive in the mail and 82 percent using newspaper-delivered coupons. Although the percentage of Millennials using paperless coupons is significantly higher than the average (81 percent versus 66 percent), Millennials still use print coupons at a similar rate to older generations. Specifically, 82 percent of Millennials use coupons from newspapers, similar to 83 percent of Gen X and 79 percent of Baby Boomers; 85 percent use coupons received in the mail, compared to the average of 87 percent.

Millennials also actively seek out digital coupons at the rate of 41 percent versus 29 percent of all consumers; 27 percent of all consumers versus 40 percent of Millennials have used paperless discounts. Across generations, the most popular websites to search for coupons included retailer websites (57 percent), coupon websites (53 percent), manufacturer and brand websites (35 percent), and search engines (49 percent).