Presentation 3 Generation x

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Originally prepared in 2006. Are Generation X a lost generation?

Presentation 3 Generation x

  1. 1. On no…it’s Generation X Born 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  2. 2. What is this? This presentation is one of five presentations outlining our understanding of Generational perspectives 1. The Theory of Generations 2. Boomers 3. Generation X 4. Generation Y, or Millenials 5. Applying generational perspectives to MarketingBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  3. 3. introduction  Childhood  Instability  Individualism  Marketing  What do they look like now?Born 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  4. 4. A reminder… Nomads Generational X archetype…. • ratty • tough • unwanted • diverse • adventurous • cynical Childhood was experienced • Without religion • Rising crime rates • Weakening family valuesBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  5. 5. Why are they called Generation X? X refers to the lost, disenfranchised, nihilism felt by this generation It was popularised by Douglas Coupland’s book… “This generation is underemployed, intensely private and unpredictable” Douglas Coupland, Generation X, 1991Born 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  6. 6. What has been written about them? Symptoms that have long been commonly attributed to Generation X • Cynicism, alienation, amorality • Childlessness, pessimism, distrustfulBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  7. 7. Childhood: How were they made to feel this way? Generation X children were valued less than Boomer children This was manifest in many ways • Culture: Film • Politics: Social policy • Parenting: DetachedBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  8. 8. Childhood: Culture and film • During Generation X childhood, ‘Devil Child’ Films became popular • 1965 Children of the damned • 1968 Rosemary’s Baby • 1973 The Exorcist • 1974 Its Alive! • 1976 The Omen • 1976 Carrie • 1978 Halloween • 1978 Omen II • 1980 Friday the 13th In total 22 popular films were made…since 1982 there have been 9 Source: IMBDBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  9. 9. Childhood: Politics Tightening UK welfare state measures penalised parents • Benefits were reduced and means testing was increasingly used • The real value of child benefit reduced from 1975 - 1983 • In 1980 the Education Act relaxed the provision of milk and meals and limited free school meals to children receiving supplementary benefits or family income supplement • The UK government was increasingly preoccupied with pensionsBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  10. 10. Childhood: Parenting was Detached • Family values deteriorated  Rising divorce rates (peaked in 1993)  Delaying birth until later….  Numbers marrying falling  Numbers remarrying rising  Increase in step families (social vs. biological parenting) • For those born in 1970, by the age of 5, 9% had experienced family disruption* • Generation X kids childhood was often insecure and unpredictable *Source: Osborne and Milbank 1987Born 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  11. 11. Instability: Lack of Stability • Cold War kids • Most Gen X remember Ronald Reagan and President Gorbachov • Gen X childhood was full of newspaper headlines that sensationalised the nuclear threat • The nuclear mushroom cloud was etched on the mind of every child and teenagerBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  12. 12. Instability: Emerging world concern • During the early 80’s the Ethiopian famine highlighted African poverty • Gen X-ers were confronted by disaster and parents inadvertently induced guilt about their own childhoods  “eat up your meal, there are children in Africa…” • However, Boomer pop stars and musicians galvanised a suitably reactivist response in the form of Live AidBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  13. 13. Instability: Economic instability • Margaret Thatchers monetary policy had a major impact on the country • The new economy in the square mile was impressive • But it left huge depression in many parts of the country • Key issues were  Spiralling interest rates  Unemployment (3 million)  Industry closure  Strikes, notably the miners strikeBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  14. 14. Instability:Recent BBC Blog on Xer coming of age ……..Going into the job centre where the cards were yellow with age, asking why they werent taken down and being told that then there would be no cards at all. Unemployment marches, anti-nuclear marches and the forlorn chant of Maggie, Maggie, Maggie, out, out, out. Tax cuts for the rich, job cuts for the working class. The introduction of cash machines, the rise of aids and heroin addiction. Watching the Falklands war on television, the marriage of Charles and Di. Riots on the streets, many of which were never reported, supposedly to prevent copycat riots. All in all, a decade which served only to induce severe depression in most people.Born 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  15. 15. Instability: Can we play? No. • In 1985 AIDS was diagnosed • Via a government campaign and media spotlight it soon found its way into mainstream consciousness • At school, college and university Xers were warned about unsafe sex and needles • However confusion reigned and rumours spread about saliva – meaning kissing was a potential threat!Born 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  16. 16. Individualism: De-classing • During the 80’s and 90’s the UK became less class focussed • This was a direct influence of Generation X disenfranchised view of society • The fall out was a more democratic view of the population Income became the new status indicatorBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  17. 17. The rise of individualism • Another key aspect of the Xer 80’s environment was the rise of individualism • This was driven by Thatcherism  “Roll back the frontiers of the state that stifles individual initiative and watch the genius of the British people flourish” Margaret Thatcher, 1981 • Over the decade  Owning a property became more realisable  Privatisation meant stock ownership increased  New business start ups rose by 110% in 1985* *Source: DTI SME BureauxBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  18. 18. The rise of individualism • The fall out on culture over the decade meant…  Income distribution became increasingly polarised  A strong work ethic emerged  Materialism increased Yuppies! Dinky’s!Born 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  19. 19. Individualism: Music genre!Born 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  20. 20. The rise of individualism Youth culture was becoming more complex • Music became increasingly fragmented  Birth of Punk  Birth of Hip Hop  Birth of Rave  Birth of New romantic • Fashion and fashion labels became more accessible  High street fashion chains  Sports fashion was bornBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  21. 21. Increasingly tribal behaviour • As influences from other countries became prominent • As previous youth generation trends were revisited • As new trends were forged A new, increasingly fragmented marketing target emergedBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  22. 22. In a word… Me, myself and I (to quote a popular hip hop group of the 80’s)Born 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  23. 23. Marketing The birth of green marketing New formats, new tastesBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  24. 24. Marketing Levis groundbreaking ad changed relationships with advertisingBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  25. 25. Marketing Others began to use analogy rather than directs sales messagesBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  26. 26. What do they look like now?Born 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  27. 27. What’s an Xer look like now? • Oldest is 46 (Born in 1965) • Xers are about 22% of the population – the smallest group of all living generations • Higher social grade than population as whole  AB 28% (22% UK norm)  C1 30% (30%)  C2 18% (15%) 22% Single; 72% in relationship  D 18% (17%) 67% have children  E 5% (16%) 73% own their homeBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  28. 28. Boomers vs. Generation X When those born in 1954 reached 30 (Baby Boomers) *Source: Economic and Social Research Council Gen X • 12.5% were single and never wed 19.5 % • 10% were cohabiting 20 % • 70% were married 54 % • 81 % of women had a child 69% • 18 % shared the cooking 29% • 21 % shared the cleaning 29% • 11 % shared ironing and laundry 21% • 27 % of women were housewives 19% • 68 % of women had paid work 74% • 70 % ate as a family daily 63% • 23 % of people rate happiness as nine out of 10 or better 26%Born 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  29. 29. Cynicism is apparent... I feel that my generation has had a good impact on the world 1 - Strongly agree 2 3 4 5 - Strongly disagree Boomers 20 28 24 15 10 Generation X 9 20 37 21 12 Generation Y 8 28 30 23 10 Source: Logistix IQ800 August 2007 dataBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs
  30. 30. What’s an Xer look like now? Single lives predominate Few large families Gender roles are blurred WealthyBorn 1965 – 1981 Currently 30yrs – 46yrs

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