An unprecedented study of Millennial attitudes and behaviors provides a lot to chew on for businesses that market to this most powerful and growing consumer demographic.
The seemingly incongruous conclusion of the study is that those under 30 in countries around the world acknowledge that they face significant economic challenges, yet overwhelmingly report being very happy.
This study, commissioned by Viacom and Viacom International Media Networks, looked at the attitudes, values, aspirations and perspectives of people aged nine to 30 in 24 countries, including the United States, Canada, China, Japan, India, Australia, numerous European countries and others. It included 15,000 interviews. According to the authors, the study is the broadest undertaking of its type to date.
Not surprisingly, the economy is the top issue facing Millennials today. A large majority of respondents said they felt personally affected by the global economic crisis — 68% overall, with numbers much higher in countries that are suffering the most from the economic calamity, including Spain (86%), Italy (85%) and Greece (80%).
Even so, the vast majority say they have a strong sense of happiness and optimism. More than three-quarters say they are “very happy,” with the highest levels of happiness occurring in Latin America.
Again, not surprisingly, job security is a concern. About half of young people believe job security will get worse in the future and 78% say they would rather have a minimum wage job than no job.
The study reinforces several understandings about the Millennial character. Where previous generations have often exhibited conflict with their parents’ generation, the key driver of happiness for Millennials today is spending time with their family. Friendships are another key to happiness, both real time and online.
Electronic connectedness is important to Millennials, with 73% saying the Internet changes the way they think about the world. Notably, however, the perspective of this generation toward technology may surprise the older generation. According to the study, the Millennial attitude is, “Technology doesn’t make me who I am. It lets me be who I am.”
“Among the characteristics that may seem incongruous to outsiders, Millennials are at once as proud as any generation of belonging to their particular nationality, yet tolerant and welcoming of others living in their home country,” says Eyal Lichtmann, CEO of CampusAuction and an expert in helping non-profits and businesses connect with the Millennial generation. “Fully 93% say that it is their responsibility to treat all people with respect regardless of race, gender, religion, political views or sexual orientation.”
Lichtmann has written and spoken widely about the Millennials’ inherent altruism.
All of the data comes together to depict a generation that — by a margin of 87% — declares itself curious about the world.
The connectedness that defines Millennials is creating dramatic implications for policy-makers and for anyone who deals with Millennials, including businesses that need to reach this $400 billion market today and to build loyalty for the future.
Effectively reaching this demographic requires businesses to recognize the realities of what motivates the 80 million members of the under-30 demographic in North America.
CampusAuction has brought together the foremost expertise and information about Millennials, channeling it to create an unparalleled platform to connect socially conscious Millennial consumers with businesses that demonstrate concern for social good.
If your business needs help connecting with this crucial demographic, contact Eyal Lichtmann at partnerships@CampusAuction.com.