What Worries Millennials? According to Onesixtyfourth's CultureQ Research: Academic Achievement, Personal Accomplishment and the Global Economy

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As brand marketers look to target this generation of consumers, understanding their concerns is critical.


As brand marketers look to target this generation of consumers, understanding their concerns is critical.

Who are you calling lazy? CultureQ, branding consultancy Onesixthyfourth LLC’s ongoing research initiative with Millennials in the U.S. and the UK, finds that Millennials have been incorrectly portrayed as pampered and lazy, and that many respondents not only want academic success, they want it to the highest degree possible. Participants also named personal fulfillment and accomplishment as an important goal in their lives. And they are concerned about the impact of the global economy, with its economic instability and high debt levels, on their own lives and chances for success.

Anne Bahr Thompson, Founding Partner of Onesixtyfourth, pointed to the following findings:

•55% of respondents view academic success as a critical part of their lives. “Generation Y’ers are finding it difficult to reconcile the dreams their parents have instilled with them with the harsh realities of current society. And punching the right academic ticket appears mandatory to them.”

•69% of respondents want to become more accomplished and be a better person. “A misconception that some marketers have about Millennials is that they know who they are and what they want. In fact, many Millennials feel unfulfilled and fearful of missing out on any opportunity in their lives. They want to become a better person and have a better attitude towards others.”

•68% of respondents are concerned about the global economy. “Along with academic achievement and becoming more accomplished, employment and financial stability are both the major goals of and the driving fear behind Millennials. Raised in an age of economic turmoil, Gen Y is highly concerned about the future of the global economy. The world seems to be falling apart. Economic problems are reflected by social conflicts, including gun violence. The result is an overall sense of trepidation and what seems to be a growing cynicism toward the ‘American Dream’.”

So how can brands and marketers relate to this group of consumers to achieve brand citizenship? According to Ms. Bahr Thompson, here are five suggested strategies to include in your brand:

1. Inspire confidence in the future. Despite the dismal economy, Millennials haven't let go of their dreams and need to feel fulfilled. Lift them up with optimistic, life-enhancing messages and brand experiences.

2. Be goal oriented. Millennials want to feel productive at all times. So organize branding initiatives and communications around highly specific goals Gen Y’ers can relate to that make them feel accomplished. And allow them to quickly inter-change between different tasks (e.g. work and study, gym and social).

3. Deliver consistently. Consistency and regular communication lead to trust, especially with Millennials. Develop apps, products and service propositions that let you consistently check in with Millennials and show your commitment to their physical and emotional well-being.

4. Give over control. Millennials want to feel they're in control, especially given the boundary-less world of today. Let go of the policies or processes that restrict individual freedom or limit their choices.

5. Be bigger than your product. Millennials want relationships that help them be found or progress. Provide opportunities to partner with them, mentor them, help them extend their network, form new social groups, and develop relationships using your brand as the connector.

CultureQ reports are available individually or as a subscription service with opportunities for customization. For more information about CultureQ, visit http://www.onesixtyfourth.com.

About Onesixtyfourth
Onesixtyfourth is a trend-based, brand and communications strategy boutique that uses its unique understanding of cultural shifts & social movements to inspire innovation and growth.

Media Contact:
Rosalia Scampoli
Marketcom PR
212-537-5177, Ext. 7

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