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Millennials Defined

images1If there’s one thing every millennial hates, it’s an overly broad generalization about what every millennial thinks. But, we do know the millennial generation thinks differently about brands than its Generation X predecessors and the Baby Boomers before them. Millennials tend to be very socially aware, are prone to be more public about it, and they are simply more thoughtful and forward-looking. Authenticity is critical for brands to retain consumer loyalties. As a brand attempts to connect with the consumer as a particular type of person, then that message has to be consistent at all touch points where the consumer interfaces or comes into contact with the company or its products.

At the recent Advertising Week in New York, researcher and Exponential VP, Bryan Melmed presented the findings from his team’s data analysis of 4 million young adults.  You probably know if you’re a millennial, but what kind of millennial? Each group is largely defined by its reaction to three major forces: the economy, globalization and social media. Those, combined with an array of other experiences and lifestyle choices, have led to the emergence of these 12 millennial groups:

  • Boss Babes/Brogrammers Wildly ambitious, aggressive boss women and hard-partying male tech pros who also see themselves suffering for their lifestyle, young people with back pain and insomnia.
  • The Under-Employed/ Shut OutsThese are college-educated, independent from parents, stuck in low-paying jobs and cramped apartments with too many roommates millennials or unemployed millennials with impractical degrees or no college education whatsoever.
  • NostalgicsHipsters and others who fetishize blue-collar traditions or have returned to their childhood pastimes for comfort.
  • Travel Enthusiasts/ Culinary ExplorersThey’re exploring countries that Gen X and previous generations never would have dreamed to go to. Travel has become very, very safe. You have everything you need in your hand, including maps, a translator and a sense of safety.
  • The Exuberants/The CollectorsThey take pictures everywhere. They blog everything. They feel they’re out to experience everything life has to offer. They are socially competitive, driven to try new things by the fear of missing out (FOMO). They are also digital listeners who browse and absorb social feeds without creating content of their own.
  • The Quarter-Life Crisis MillennialEmotionally uncertain millennials paralyzed by an abundance of too many possible life choices.
  • Millennial Marthas/ Millennial MomsHealthy, active and socially conscious young moms. Self-curated content creators who make all things crafty and stylish look easy. Think of them as more approachable Martha Stewarts for the millennial era.

images12Millennials as a generation are the most diverse and the most heterogeneous of any we’ve seen before. Millennials have less in common with each other than any generation before them. Do you agree? Let us know what you think and always stay #TopRight!

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