Regular Posts Tagged ‘yaya’
20th Feb 2014 Posted in: YAYA Wire 8
2014 Winter Olympics: 5 Reasons Why Sochi is “Special” for Millennials

By: Todd Smithern, Researcher

The 2014 Olympics in Sochi will be viewed as possibly the most unique winter games to date. Not for the quest for medals, but for the arrival of Sochi’s worst enemy: social media.

Millennials are using their full arsenal of social media tools to share content on the Sochi Olympics—but rarely does the content feature the games. A growing sense of internationalism is becoming extremely relevant. Here are 5 trending topics that provide a glimpse into the minds of this dynamic age group.

1. #bobcostaspinkeye

Bob Costas is the latest victim of the parodies accompanying the Olympics. Bob suffered from an extreme case of pink eye, resulting in an undying sea of memes and jokes from both parody and real Twitter accounts.

The popularity of this story overshadows the medal counts because of the millennial tendency to “multiscreen” – or watch TV and use a mobile device at the same time. According to Mintel’s report on “Marketing To Millennials,” we are significantly more likely to simultaneously multiscreen and some 28% would give up access to broadcast television rather than their phone.

Millennials will likely see these memes and even fake Bob Costas Twitter accounts first because they will appear on their phones, laptops and tablets. We like to add our personal touch on humorous national stories.

2. #SochiJailBreak

On February 8th American bobsledder Johnny Quinn got stuck in a Sochi hotel bathroom without a phone. He eventually kicked his way through and then tweeted a picture of his victorious escape.

The social media traffic has not stopped since. This story alone has more coverage than the actual games itself. Millennials are following these types of stories because we can see the news as it happens by checking any news outlet, rather than waiting for the delayed broadcast.

3. #WomensSkiJumping

This is the first Olympics where women have their own ski jumping event and the fight to make this happen is a win against sexism internationally. Millennials grew up during multiple activist movements and this story hits home.

The millennial perspective on women’s rights is supportive and we don’t think twice about it. We appreciate an improvement in the Olympics for the countries where women do not have the same rights as men

4. #SochiDogs

Before the Olympics even started, stories were being shared about the rumors that Russia was poisoning stray dogs around Sochi. Millennials were outraged when we heard these rumors and took action the best way we could, through social media.

News of a Russian animal rights activist being detained just furthered the cause. Millennials right away knew they couldn’t trust Sochi and this will resonate for years to come.

How a country or even a corporation handles its negative publicity affects the way a millennial views them. Mintel also indicates that, “more than 4 in 10 millennials make an effort to buy from “good” companies/brands—ones that support issues they believe in.”

5. Sochi’s Anti-LGBTQ Shadow

According to the same report, almost one quarter of the millennial population is non-white, making it the most diverse group of adults in US history. The millennial viewpoint is to not discriminate based on neither race nor sexual identity. Putin’s harsh regulation on the LGBTQ community threatens our values that we pride ourselves upon.

A growing sense of international camaraderie is forming because of these games. Students at Cambridge University held a flash mob protest and Canada is one of the forerunners of this movement. They have a rather unique television commercial that helps support the international LGBTQ community.

Millennials feel more connected to not only the athletes, but also the international community as a whole. Feeling connected and personalized is very important to millennials. Just looking at social media throughout the Olympics shows the impact that social media can have.

The Mintel Report

Featured Image Credit

Photo Credit 1

Photo Credit 2

Photo Credit 3 


10th Feb 2014 Posted in: YAYA Wire 9
Michael Sam: What Does Gay Have to do with Football?

By: Cathy Ann Baker, Content Curation Specialist

Michael Sam received an immense amount of press in the last 24 hours across all media outlets. The University of Missouri (Mizzou) could not be more proud of our fellow Tiger for being the first openly gay man to potentially play in the NFL.

However, this news was a non-event for the Youth and Young Adults (YAYAs) at Mizzou. Several students at the University knew that Sam was gay for some time now. YAYA students, ages 18 to 24, do not think that being a gay football player is as sensational as some would make it to be. Why does it matter? Sam is a powerhouse football star and we would love him – gay or not.

The YAYA perspective is to not discriminate against sexual orientation. Sam is iconic. He proudly and maturely (in a YAYA fashion) came out to the world as an openly gay man that can play some serious football. We cannot wait for the day when talented people like Sam will be recognized solely for their talent. He is a football player, so let him be a football player. He was known as the Southeastern Conference (SEC) Defensive Player of the Year up until 24 hours ago, now he will be known as the “gay” football player.

Millennials and Generation Z grew up in a very diverse world. Issues are not black and white, gay or straight, like they have been in previous generations. We are less likely to discriminate against those people that are different rather in race or sexual orientation. Rather, we are proud to be different.

According to the Pew Research Center, we are the most ethnically and racially diverse cohort of youth in United States’ history. We know no different and find it hard to understand why in the 21st century more people are not more tolerant.

We also grew up in the information age. Technology is constantly at our fingertips and we are always connected. This connectivity allows groups of people to come together like they never have before. It is becoming the norm for social groups such as the LGBTQ community to come together through social media and be proud. We see the Internet as a place to express who you are freely and to gain support from others like you.

 tweet #2


As Mizzou Tigers we are ecstatic that Sam has the courage to break through personal fear and create NFL history. As Millennials and Gen Z’s, gay is not a catchy headline or front page news.

 tweet #3

 Photo Credit. 

21st Nov 2013 Posted in: YAYA Wire 11
Millennial Shopping:  It’s a Touchy, Feely Kind of World

By: Megan Krtek, Copy Editor

‘Tis the season to be jolly, and with Christmas fast approaching, Millennials will soon be shopping for their holiday gifts, but where and how they shop just might surprise you.

It’s no secret – Millennials are big shoppers, as 37 percent* go as far as declaring their love for it.  Pair this love for shopping with the $600 billion dollars spent each year by the 80 million American Millennials, and you’ll find some very happy business owners.  It’s also no secret that Millennials are connected and love technology, so you would think they would do their holiday shopping online, right?  Not exactly.

Don’t get me wrong.  Millennials are shopping online. Ninety-one percent* have purchased something online in the past year, and 45 percent spend an hour (or more) per day on retail-oriented sites.  In addition, online spending is expected grow as much as 11 percent this year, while retail stores only expect a 2 percent growth.  It’s clear that the popularity of online shopping is increasing among Millennials.

But don’t close up shop just yet, storeowners.  It turns out that (drumroll please) Millennials still prefer in-store shopping over online.  Almost two-thirds* of Millennials surveyed go to enclosed malls at least once a month. Seventy percent* of women and 50 percent of men consider shopping as a form of entertainment, and shopping centers are a hub for socializing.  This generation views shopping as a time they can share with family and friends, and only 35 percent* shop alone.

Millennials are also multichannel shoppers, meaning they view products online, but actually make the purchase in the store.  This generation grew up in the ‘Information Age’, so they are used to an unlimited source of reports and consumer opinions on the Internet, which they use to research a product before buying.



Touchy and feely is the name of the game with Millennials.  They purchase in stores because they want to physically interact with a product by picking it up, trying it on, etc., so it’s easy to see why stores still dominate when it comes to purchasing.  However, it’s important for storeowners to recognize the increasing popularity of online shopping and make the necessary changes to keep up with the digital world.


Here are four tips to combat the online shopping world:

 1.  Location

Location is a key factor in a store’s success with Millennials, and there are certain aspects that can increase the chances of them coming in rather than looking online.

Keep it local and Millennials will come.  They like stores that are within walking distance, and they are more likely to share their location to receive coupons from nearby businesses (56 percent).

Move to where the food is.  Millennials are serious foodies, and 46 percent* eat out at least once a week with family and friends.  A store surrounded by a number of well-established, popular restaurants increases the chance of Millennials stopping in to browse before or after a meal out.

2.  Redesign, including an incorporation of technology:

Millennials are visual people.  They are attracted to bright, pleasing aesthetics and get bored easily with the drab.  Websites adhere to this need for visuals, so malls and stores should too.

In order to keep Millennials coming, older enclosed malls, as well as stores, should be renovated, and newer ones need to make sure they are keeping up with the current trends.  This renovation* should come with:

  • An area for people to socialize in
  • Additionof restaurants and other food specialties
  • Incorporation of specialty businesses, like a movie theater or the amusement park in The Mall of America


Millennials’ lives revolve around technology, so in addition to these renovations, new technology should be incorporated into malls and stores.  Millennials are 216 percent more likely to be influenced by in-store touch screen devices, like tablets and laptops, as they have a big impact on their purchasing decisions.

 3.  Get digital with social media:

Millennials know how to find deals online.  They spend 17. 4 hours a week on social media, and over 50 percent of women (44 percent of men) in this generation use Facebook and Twitter to get updates on trends and upcoming sales.

Storeowners need to build a “true digital strategy” that maintains one single idea/conversation with a full integration of various social media platforms.  Create a Facebook fan page and accounts on Twitter, Instragram and Pinterest to successfully reach Millennials and keep them updated.

It’s important to note that Millennials are looking for an interactive conversation on social media sites, and they seek out information they want like consumer opinions. Storeowners need to be sure they monitor all the comments (negative and positive) out there.

For more tips, check out Tom Borneuf’s blog on how companies should use social media.

4.  Discounts:

Millennials enjoy a good sale, and discount department stores and warehouse clubs are their favorite places to shop.  Ninety percent* of Millennials visit these stores at least once a month.

A store needs to offer monthly sales and deals that are promoted on social media and that use the Internet to make them more personal and tailored to Millennials.  Online has the ability to offer this generation products based on their search history, so stores should use this tactic as well.


 *Launch PDF file.

Featured Image Credit

Photo Credit #1

Photo Credit #2


19th Nov 2013 Posted in: YAYA Wire 7
Making Music for Millennials

By Dawn Schillinger, Primary Researcher

Audio has always been important in advertisements.  A jingle can stay in the mind of consumers for years.  A song can stay in the iTunes forever.  Youth and young adults (YAYAs), or 18-25 year olds, have a special tie to music.  Millennials are the generation that grew up constantly adapting to new technology until they could carry any song around in their pocket. With all that sound growing up, these young adults are uncomfortable in the silence and seek to fill it with noise.

Here is where good marketing comes in.  The power good music has to fill the silence and capture YAYA attention should be harnessed in advertisements.  Not just short sound bites, but long form music that can draw their attention for longer.  Downloads of songs used in advertisements replay on laptops and iPhones, sticking in the YAYA mind for much longer than the spot.

As Russell Wallach pointed out, music can be a powerful tool in an ad.  Music is the content and media, carrying the message wherever it goes.  It can drive loyalty, whether this is from artist-loyal consumers turning to the product their favorite musician is supporting or from those users who like the music and play it over and over again.

People are social with their music, and they talk about new songs with friends in person and on social media.  With all this downloading, music can make data, giving marketers information on who is being influenced and downloading their music.  These insights allow for future campaigns to be more effective and maybe reveal previously unknown markets.

Some companies have music down.  The following three examples do a great job of using music drive the company’s message home, garnering enough attention that the songs might just find their way on to the next Millennial playlist.

 1. Metro Trains “Dumb Ways to Die”

This advertisement has shown up before in our Creative Advertisement article as a great demonstration of creativity.  Simply put, it’s catchy.  This song drew attention not just from Australia, where it was made, but also around the world.  With 64 million views on YouTube and its own app with over 72 thousand ratings, it’s obvious this advertisement successfully kept its song on the brain.

2. OREO “Wonderfilled”

OREO struck gold with this campaign, which quickly became a sensation.  Artists like Kacey Musgraves and Chiddy Bang made their own covers to appeal to different demographics, and rewritten versions like Bedtime, can be adapted for adorable Father’s Day sharing.  The song, featuring cute fairy tails and the addictive Owl City tunes, along with an easy free download from the website, made “Wonderfilled” a campaign that was shared over and over.

3. Chipotle “Scarecrow”

Sometimes, a marketer doesn’t need to reinvent the wheel.  Chipotle struck new ground with their “Scarecrow” advertisement.  With a powerful message and impressive visuals, the music had to match to really keep attention, so instead of creating entirely new audio, they revamped some old content.  Fiona Apple’s version of Pure Imagination, a song from a childhood classic – Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, is the perfect haunting companion to this advertisement.  The music drives the emotion for the spot and is universal enough to be downloaded and replayed.  Every time someone hears the song from the ad, there is a reminder of Chipotle.

Take a lesson from these advertisements.  Make your music catchy and download-worthy. With a good song, there’s no limit to the reach of a new campaign.


Featured Image Credit


18th Nov 2013 Posted in: YAYA Wire 4
Millennials and Religion: An Evolving Relationship

by Faith Stonner, Audience Developer

When it comes to religion, the Millennial generation’s faith is shaped by continuous access to information provided by the Internet in a quickly evolving world.  Key studies show that Youth and Young Adults (YAYAs) are considerably less religious than previous generations of Americans, as one in four members of this age group are unaffiliated with any particular faith.

So what are Millennials seeking in religion?  Let’s explore:

1. Social Consciousness

The YAYA generation, or 18-24 year old generation, is more socially and politically tolerant than older generations.  According to a recent Pew study, “In their social and political views, young adults are clearly more accepting than older Americans of homosexuality.”  Because of this mentality, these young adults are more likely to affiliate with a religious organization that promotes political and social consciousness.  They want to be able to share religious experiences with friends, including those of varying sexual orientations, which implies that the YAYA generation will gravitate toward a religious environment that promotes equality.

2. Relationship Oriented Communities

Millennials are known for their need of social interaction*  – this characteristic also translates to religious preferences.  Group activities, extended social involvement and mentorship opportunities are likely to help the YAYA generation find belonging in a religious environment.  A recent Barna Group report found that those who maintain their religion in college were twice as likely to stay because of a close personal friendship with an adult inside the church, while 90 percent of those who left never had a church mentor.  Religious communities should focus on building strong bonds between Millennials and other participants within the church environment.  Strong, lasting relationships ensure engagement and dedication from the YAYA generation.

3. Authenticity

Whether it’s a new product, the latest band or a religious preference, Millennials are constantly seeking authenticity.  A quote from a CNN blog titled, Why Millennials are Leaving the Church, states, “Time and again, the assumption among Christian leaders, is that the key to drawing twenty-somethings back to church is simply to make a few style updates – edgier music, more casual services, a coffee shop in the fellowship hall, a pastor who wears skinny jeans, an updated Web site that includes online giving.”

Right?  Wrong.  Millennials are seeking a pure form of authenticity from religion, and they can easily sense insincerity.  Religious organizations need to be conscious of their communication to the YAYA demographic.  The updating of appearance-focused features isn’t enough – these young adults want a spiritual message that’s relevant and applicable to their life.

4. New Spirituality

Are independent spiritual practices, such as yoga and meditation, shaping the spiritual lives of the YAYA generation?  According to a Lifeway Christian Resources study, 72 percent of Millennials say they are more spiritual than religious, which implies that as a whole, this age group isn’t completely losing faith. The new age of religion and spirituality will be defined by the YAYA generation’s search for alternative forms of unorganized religion.

The trend in the Millennial generation toward spirituality is visible on both a national and global level.  According to a global Viacom study, “In the world of Millennials, spirituality and faith are, for the most part, closely aligned.  While there are a handful of countries – for example, Egypt and South Africa – where religion carries greater weight among the concerns of young people, in most countries our data demonstrates similar patterns of engagement with spirituality vs. caring about faith/religion (31% and 33% respectively).”  Millennials are redefining religion and breaking down constraints built by social standards.

5. Relevance

Technology has exposed Millennials to a variety of different religious perspectives.  In order to stay relevant, religious organizations must use digital tools to reach the Millennial generation.  Religious social networking sites such as help Millennials to define their own spiritual path.  Social media and websites are vital in helping this generation research information about faith.

The principle of relevance applies to the content delivered in a religious environment, as Millennials want relevant information via a modern context.  References from The Bible and other traditional texts are often dismissed by Millennials because they aren’t seen as applicable to modern life.  Understanding the YAYA need for relevancy will help increase engagement and acceptance of faith-related principles.

Millennials aren’t following the same religious paths as their parents; they’re developing a customized, unique, and personal brand of faith.  What do you think about the religious differences between these young adults and previous generations?  How do you think the growth of spirituality will impact the Millennial culture?

Let us know your thoughts by tweeting @yayaconnect or commenting in the box below.

 Featured Image Credit

Photo Credit #1

Photo Credit #2

*Launch PDF file.


15th Nov 2013 Posted in: YAYA Wire 4
Quiz Time: Are You In Touch With Your Inner Millennial

By Jessica Duncan, Multimedia Developer

The Youth and Young Adult (YAYA) market is a diverse and difficult target to reach. We love our technology, we place an importance on expressing ourselves, and we can sometimes seem entitled.  How connected are you with the YAYA market?  Take this quiz to see just how similar you might be.

When answering these questions, please keep track of the answers you pick.  You will tally them at the end of the quiz.


 1. Be honest, how many times have you checked your phone in the past hour?

a. I haven’t even looked away from my phone in the past hour.

b. Just a couple times.

c. Sometimes I forget I even have a phone.


The Youth and Young Adult market is (surprise, surprise) extremely attached to their smart phones.  Eighty-nine percent of 18-24 year olds pick up their phone within the first 15 minutes of waking up, and 28 percent say they simply cannot live without their mobile devices. Read more about why you don’t want Millennials to drop the phone.



2. How many social networking profiles do you have?

a. I’m connected on every level.  Twitter, Instagram, Linkedin, you name it.

b. I’ve got a Facebook, but that’s about it.

c. I had a MySpace… once.


These 18-24 year olds are very connected, with 86 percent saying they have a social networking profile.  They have an average of 510 friends, which is the most among all age groups.  Read about how to use social media to your advantage with this group.

 3. Where do you get your news?

a. Online

b. Newspapers

c. Carrier Pidgeon


The YAYA market’s online presence is also represented in their news consumption. Fifty-one percent of young adults get the news online; however, a remarkable 68 percent have acted in some way on print newspaper advertising in the last month. This medium is not as terminally ill as we thought.


 4. How important is religion in your life?

a. I am not religious.

b. My family has always been very religious, and I practice most of the time.

c. I hold religion very dear to my heart.


The YAYA generation reports significant levels of movement from the religious affiliation of their childhood.  Most of them identify as religiously unaffiliated, that is, unless you count worshipping Joss Whedon’s, “The Avengers.”  Read about Millennials’ changing views of religion.


 5. Where do you prefer to shop?

a. Shopping from my phone is the only way to get my essential cooking utensils.

b. I like shopping in stores.  You can really get a feel for that Flip-n-Grip.

c. Who needs to see the Flip-n-Grip in person?  I’ll order it from the TV commercial and get the second free!


The YAYA generation accounts for $130 billion of sales through mobile devices annually.  Smartphone are an extremely effective way to reach 18-24 year olds.  Over 83 percent of college students say that social media is the best way to reach them with discounts, deals, and offers.


 6. Do you own a laptop, smart phone, or tablet?

a. I own all three!

b. I have at least a smart phone.

c. None of these.


Millennials are leading the charge with all three of these devices.  The Millennial rates of adoption are 84 percent for laptops, 77 percent for smart phones and 34 percent for tablets.  Having multiple devices to experience media is a specialty of the YAYA market.  To learn more about Dual Screening, and who is doing it right, click here.


 7. How do you feel about starting your own business on the side?

a. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do.

b. I already have my own business.

c. I’m not really interested in the idea.


The YAYA entrepreneurs are an optimistic bunch, as they are 120 percent more apt to venture into the business world without prior workplace experience.  Thirty-five percent* of employed Millennials have started their own business on the side.  Read more about Millennial entrepreneurs and why you should care about them.


Now tally up how many of each answer you got!


If A was your answer to most of these questions, you are the most connected with the YAYA market.  Young adults may be difficult targets to reach, but there are common grounds on which you can connect with us.


If you chose answer B most often, fear not!  You are on the same page as some Millennials, but you might be missing the majority.  If you would like to know how to better market to Millennials, read this article about 3 creative strategies you could use.


And if C was your most common answer, fear not!  You may be different from Millennials in your habits, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still understand us.  Read about Youth and Young Adult Insights here to learn more about what makes us tick.


Launch PDF file.

Featured Image Credit

Photo Credit #1

Photo Credit #2


13th Nov 2013 Posted in: YAYA Wire 4
The Benefits of a Lazy Millennial Worker

By Thomas Bourneuf, Public Relations Events Coordinator

Often times as Americans, we pride ourselves on our work ethic, and why not?  America is listed as one of the hardest working nations in the world, with the average person working 1,798 hours in a year.  But unlike most European countries, the US does not guarantee workers sick days or maternity leave. For this reason, it is not surprising that many business “gurus” tell you that it’s good to work more, and Sheryl Sandberg tells women to “Lean In” while other business leaders advocate never stop working.

As we look at these pieces of information, you may be wondering where the Youth and Young Adult generation (18-24 year olds) comes into play (we are titled YAYA Connection after all).  Well, as it turns out, Millennials are redefining what the traditional workweek means, and with this redefinition comes the realization that maybe more isn’t better.  So sit back, relax and enjoy several reason why Millennials are lazy, and it’s a good thing!

Lazy = Efficient

As Maggie Forsee mentioned in a previous article on YAYA connection, Millennials now see the workday as 24/7 rather than 9 to 5.  This is due to the effect that social media has on communication, but what wasn’t discussed is – why this is the case?  One of the main things that people in the workforce spend time on is e-mail, and a survey by Good Technology found that 69 percent of people cannot go to bed without checking their account.  In this instance, social media combines both work and play so that work can continue indefinitely.

While the statement that “lazy = efficient” might be an overstatement, it does expose an important truth.  Rather than focusing on how hard they work, Millennials focus more on the work they get done.  Businesses can use this by framing problems in terms of creativity, rather than in terms of output.  I can beat my head against the wall for several hours to knock it down, or, I can just open a door in the middle.

Happiness is the Goal

Why do you have a job?  It’s a simple question with an unusual answer.  If your answer is something like “To pay for food and rent,” or “To live the way I want,” then you haven’t dug far enough. According to “The Consumer Mind” by Pepe Martinez, happiness is the end goal that all people seek.  Why do you want that steak?  Happiness.  Why do you want a family? Happiness.  While this may seem like a simple notion, often times people complicate it by overworking.

Millennials are “lazy” in the sense that more of them are skipping the traditional “rat race” to do what truly matters to them.  Look at this one writer who talks about his son Max’s unconventional lifestyle.  Even though Max is not “successful” by traditional standards (salary, 401k, etc…), he is happy to wake up every morning, which shows that when Millennials go into work, they are more likely to put effort because they love what they are doing.

Companies can use this mentality by finding workers, such as Millennials, who are more interested in the work they are doing, rather than the compensation.  While this may change the model of how business is conducted, it will create a more involved, loyal workforce.

Is More Work the Answer?

While we have already established how Americans work more than most countries in the world, we haven’t asked if this is a good thing or not.  If you search online you won’t be lacking in articles that detail the woes of the American health insurance, and with massive rates of obesity and other preventable diseases, Americans are sicker than ever.

If you look at the 10 happiest countries in the world, you will note that none of them are considered the “hardest working.”  America comes in at 17th in terms of happiness.  So then, if happiness is the goal, why do we keep doing jobs that are killing us?

Millennials come in again by redefining what success means. Seventy-one percent of Millennials* believe that the United States should in invest in renewable energies.  With a more conscientious generation comes a redefinition of what fiscal success means, and in this instance, it isn’t just money, but also helping social and environmental issues.

*Launch PDF file.

Featured Image Source

Photo Credit #1

Photo Credit #2


8th Nov 2013 Posted in: YAYA Wire 3
4 Strategies to Target Millennials During the Holidays

By Maggie Forsee, Webmaster

Last week was Millennial’s favorite holiday: Halloween. Now that it’s passed, how do you get Millennials to spend during the rest of the holiday season? Here’s some good news: compared to their elders, Millennials have the highest outlook in terms of holiday spending.  This is especially beneficial considering that overall fewer than one out of ten holiday shoppers plan to set aside more of their budget for gifts during the holidays. So with Black Friday and Cyber Monday quickly approaching, here are 4 brand image strategies that will help you capture Millennials’ buying power during the holiday season

1. Create An Experience

Millennials love spending money on Halloween because it’s entertaining and casual fun. Even though they’re not trick-or-treating, they’re still celebrating in their own way. Millennials want to spend on products that contribute to their entertainment or experience. If your product is not experiential in nature, ensure you are leveraging your social media and brand image to make it so. Unlike other generations, Millennials arelikely to research every purchase beforehand, even if it’s on their smart phone right in the store. Capitalize on this and make buying your product an enjoyable, memorable experience. Try taking a page out of the food truck book: they have most certainly found a way to profit off the social media + experiential factor.

See also: 5 Reasons Millennials Love Food Trucks

 2. Boost Their Ego

Even though they are always researching products, Millennials are sometimes impulse buyers.  Millennials are most likely to make this impulse buy in the name of pampering themselves. Despite having more debt and less money than their parents, Millennials will splurge on certain items, particularly those perceived as an affordable luxury. These items can prove to Millennials that they’re worth buying simply because they’re unlike anything else in the market. In other words, your product’s brand image means everything.  Buying your product should boost their ego, and reinforce they’re making the right decision because this product will surely make their life better and easier.

 3. Give Them A Bargain

One thing that’s universal: a good deal. We already know Millennials have less money than generations before them, so it’s no surprise that Millennials are also seeking a bargain. According to an Accenture survey, 55 percent of all respondents in all demographics agree that they look for “the cheapest return option.”  This holiday season make sure to entice your audience through special coupons and discounts – especially with interactive email campaigns and in-store promotions. Show them what they want, when and where they want it (at an affordable price, of course) and they’ll come to you.

  4. Make It Practical

During last year’s holiday season, Fuse reported that Millennials’ shopping priorities during the holidays were (in order):

  1. Practicality
  2. Price
  3. Quality

If you can, brand your product as the most practical. While many holiday shoppers opt for clothes or gift cards, marketing a product the right way could very well entice them to forgo the easy way out. Think everything practical: use practical marketing techniques over social media, give them practical access online and in-store, and out-smart your competitors as the most practical option. Your product positioning should make logical sense to Millennials.  If it does, you’ll see serious ROI.

While marketers, retailers, and consumers gear up for the holidays, what’s your plan for targeting Millennials? Having a specific brand image is vital. Share yours with us in the comments below or @YAYAconnect.

See also:

Black Friday Backlash

Cyber is the New Black: The millennial Shopping Holiday


Featured Image Source

Photo Source #1

Photo Source #2


4th Nov 2013 Posted in: YAYA Wire 6
Taking Shots At The Future: YAYA Alcohol Attitudes

By Brooke Hofer, Editor

History has always associated the Youth and Young Adult (YAYA) market with excessive alcohol consumption.  Media has attempted to capture youth drinking attitudes with movies like Superbad, and television shows like Gossip Girl.  But as the Millennial generation reaches (and surpasses) that 21-year-old milestone, we are left to question just how do these young adults feel about alcohol?

What we’ve learned may surprise you.  In accordance with our recent white paper that explored YAYA dining, Millennials are moving toward better quality for their food – and their drinks.  Keg stands may soon be a thing of the past as Millennials seek out luxurious experiences instead.

Drinking Preferences

It’s no secret that Millennials are putting their own spin on the alcohol industry.  But, while their forbears all followed similar alcohol consumption trends, these young adults are going in a different direction.  They aren’t afraid of change, and they are more likely to try new and different kinds of alcoholic drinks than previous generations.

While Millennials still prefer beer over other types of alcohols (it accounts for 47 percent of spending on alcoholic beverages), they are drastically more likely to prefer liquor and wine over beer when compared to Gen X and Baby Boomers.  In fact, trends show that this preference for other beverages is steadily increasing with no sign of slowing down anytime soon.

So what will overcome beer as king?  Wine.  Americans report that they’d take a Blue Moon over a glass of Merlot by only a 36 to 35 percent lead.  The reasons behind this growing preference for wine have to do with much more than just taste.

preferencesPhoto Source 1

Drinking Perceptions

Millennials are adopting fine wine far ahead of when their predecessors did.  Why?  To Millennials, drinking is associated with their status and lifestyle.  According to IBIS World, these young adults are choosing to drink more “luxurious” alcohols, like wine, because of the perception of sophistication associated with it.  Millennials are also more likely to trade up to more expensive alcohol brands if they have the money to do so.

Unsurprisingly, Millennials are 27 percent more likely to consider themselves sophisticated than the average adult.  Alcohol manufacturers and distributors are drawing correlations between this and the fact that Millennials are now primary drivers of growth in the wine market.

characteristicsPhoto Source 2

Drinking and Health

Each generation, be it Millennials, Gen X, or Baby Boomers, thinks that their generation is the healthiest, and while the actual titleholder is still up for debate, levels of health are increasing across generations.  Thirty-seven percent of all people in all generations are dialing down alcohol-consumption.

What differs between generations is the definition of health.  A higher percentage of Millennials define being healthy as good eating habits and regular exercise when compared to older generations.  For all the focus Millennials place on a healthier lifestyle, they do have an Achilles heel that alcohol takes advantage of – stress.

Frank Sinatra once said, “I feel sorry for people who don’t drink.  They wake up in the morning and that’s the best they’re going to feel all day.”  Some may read this quote as sarcastic, and it may even prompt a snicker.  For others, mainly Millennials, it rings truer than you might think.

Earlier this year, YAYA Connection explored stress in Millennials and found they have higher stress levels than any other generation.  And, despite the knowledge of unhealthy implications, 20 percent of Millennials turn to alcohol to help relieve their stress.

Based on the significant impact Millennials already have on the alcoholic beverage industry, the industry as a whole could be completely reconfigured by the time Generation Z is of age to drink.  What do you think of Millennials’ changing preference of liquor and wine over beer?  How do you think this relates to their attitudes about health and wellness?  Share your response with us on Twitter @yayaconnect or comment in the box below.

Featured Image Source

Photo Credit

30th Oct 2013 Posted in: YAYA Wire 3
Tips To How Companies Should Use Social Media

By Thomas Bourneuf, Public Relations Events Coordinator


When was the last time you interacted with a company on Facebook?  Or Twitter?  Or any social media?  For most young adults this number is high, and they use social media to voice their opinions, complaints and concerns.  In fact, Fifteen percent of 16-25 year olds turn to social media first when dealing with a customer service issue, but a problems can occur when companies do not know how to interact with this age group in the ever-shifting world of social media.  Here are some general rules of thumb to prevent you from putting your foot in your mouth.

Less is More

Whether it is design elements or advertising, “less is more” seems to be a universal rule, and one of the reasons Apple has done so well is due to their minimalistic design.  This rule can also be applied to social media campaigns where companies want to get all of their information into every post.  Research shows that Facebook posts with 100-250 words get 60 percent more likes, shares and comments than other posts. A company that is excelling at this principle is Target. With over 22 million likes, Target is a very successful on Facebook, and if you look atmost of its posts, you will see that they are limited to one to two short sentences.  Every post also stays on target (no pun intended) and on brand, which gives deeper meaning to the site.

Engage Your Public

One of the biggest lessons that companies have learned in recent years is that social media cannot be viewed just as an announcement service.  Responding to follower’s questions is a great way to become integrated into their lives and help with a possibly difficult decision. A company that has been doing great in this category is Gatorade.  Leading the pack in command center style media centers, Gatorade’s site is monitored 24/7 to ensure that any questions asked on the site are answered as soon as possible.  While it may not be feasible to build a million dollar command center, ensuring that all customers that post to your site are engaged with is a way to build consumer trust. This is not just important for young adults, but all consumers, as 67 percent of all adults use social media in some form or another.

Stay Relevant (But Not Controversial)

On October 15th, Representative Pearce of Albuquerque, New Mexico, was under fire because of what his staff members posted on his Facebook page.  Creat ed during the government shut down, the post read, “Financial institutions often offer short-term loans and other resources.  Don’t wait until you are behind on a bill.”  The comment, which made national headlines, backfired and the staffer who wrote it was fired.  While it is important to stay relevant with your posts (another post on the shutdown may have worked), it is also important not to be too controversial. Looking at a previous YAYA Connection article, “Three Totally Awesome Social Media Campaigns” we can see a perfect example of staying relevant and not controversial.  Grey Poupon’s Facebook, titled the Society of Good Taste, was very successful because it was new, engaged the public and wasn’t controversial, resulting in no public backlash.  Sometimes staying relevant doesn’t mean relying on the news, but creating it.

In the End

At the end of the day, what’s most important is that your social media pages are consistent with what your brand represents and what you stand for as a company.  While these “tips and tricks” are definitely useful, an important question to ask before engaging on any platform is “Does my company need to be on social media?”  If the answer is yes, then hopefully this advice will be able to help.  Happy hunting! What are your thoughts on companies interacting with customers on social media sites?  Comment below or connect with us on Twitter @yayaconnect.    

Featured Photo Credit

Photo Credit #1

Photo Credit #2

Photo Credit #3