Gen Y survey reveals need for more targeted advertising

Generation Y: survey reveals three distinct life-stages for for brands to target
Generation Y: survey reveals three distinct life-stages for for brands to target

A new survey of brand preferences among 16- to 34-year-old UK residents has shown up a flaw in treating the age bracket as a single audience from a marketing perspective.

'The Generation Y and Brand Loyalty' survey from w00t! Media identified how relationships with brands change as individuals pass through three distinct life-stages within the Generation Y age bracket.

According to w00t!'s analysis, individuals brand preferences reflect their evolution from dependent, aged 16 to 21 (the "all about me" stage), to independent, aged 21 to 30 ("all about us"), and finally accountable, aged 25 to 34 ("all about them").

The latter two age groups' brand preferences change to include firstly, more alcohol, retailer and household grocery brands – reflecting the move out of home, onto the career ladder and in with partners – and finally more family-oriented brands, such as Johnsons, Kellogg's and Warburtons, as partner and child concerns start to become present.

Dan McDevitt, joint managing director of w00t! Media, said: "Despite being subject to the biggest life changes, no other age group is treated as such a homogenised unit by advertisers and the media as 16 to 34s. The study reveals how Generation Y's relationships with brands change considerably as they move through these very different life stages."

McDevitt added that the perception that Generation Y was only interested in the latest craze was a fallacy, as the top reasons for brand appeal given by those surveyed were quality (72%) and performance (67%).

He said: "Regardless of age, two common denominators emerged about why brands appeal to Generation Y – the product's perceived quality and performance. These 'functional' reasons run counter-intuitive to those who believe young adults are preoccupied with simply jumping onto the next big thing."

Food and technology brands make up nine out of the top 10 brands across the entire age group, including all of the top five: drinks brand Coca-Cola manages to break the duopoly, coming in seventh overall.

From one to 10, the favourite brands are: Cadbury, Amazon, Pringles, Walkers, Heinz, Google, Coca-Cola, Galaxy, Kellogg's, Facebook.

'The Generation Y and Brand Loyalty' report was based on a survey of a nationally representative sample of 1,000 UK 16-34 year olds by Dubit about the brands they liked, used and would recommend to others.

Eighteen of these respondents were recruited to become Brand Bloggers, creating secure Tumblr accounts and completing a number of activities over a two-week period, including capturing all the marketing that caught their eye during the day and interviewing their friends about brands and advertising.


Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Brand Republic Jobs

subscribe now


Ex-Thomas Cook marketer Mike Hoban resurfaces at Morrisons
Barbour creates real-time illustrations of consumers' stories for summer campaign
Viral review: Samsung goes for Apple’s jugular but fails to connect
View from Brazil: why we didn't believe we could lose the World Cup
Heineken unveils ‘Open Your City’ drive with Metro for ‘men of the world’
Unilever continues portfolio 'reshaping' with Slim-Fast sale
Amazon to fight US authorities over in-app purchase claims
Google set to invest $100m in Europe's tech start-ups
Metcalfe's set to release quirky debut TV ad
Samsung pities the iPhone 'wall huggers'
Smirnoff campaign aims to make Formula One less elitist
Apple wins EU battle to register store layout as trademark
Marketing directors need to step outside 'marketing box' to earn seat on the board
Hottest virals: Burger King’s emotional gay pride Whopper ad, plus Apple and Guinness
Developer creates software enabling Google Glass mind-control
Kick-ass girl beats up shopping centre staff in music video
Top 10 ads of the week: Aldi's World Cup cider ad scores with consumers
Sony relives Germany's 7-1 victory against Brazil in Subbuteo Vine
Burberry credits 9% revenue hike on strong online sales and 'more targeted marketing'
Ritz returns to UK TV screens after 30-year hiatus
Mars creates chief health and wellbeing officer role
Brands make the most of Germany's dramatic victory over Brazil
Adios Justin King! Watch our video tribute as he leaves Sainsbury's after a decade
Nike calls time on 13-year Manchester United kit deal
Three TV ad banned over misleading 'free' call claims
GNM boss David Pemsel: 'The Guardian has got its mojo back'
M&S has missed a massive opportunity to put digital strategy at its heart
Google partners with the Barbican to show coders are artists
Samaritans encourages men to talk about issues with #DownNotOut campaign
Lego's partnership with Shell 'not awesome', according to Greenpeace viral