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Then Life Happened: Millennials Out of Their Formative Years and Into The Fire

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Then Life Happened: Millennials Out of Their Formative Years and Into The Fire. Our latest millennials research from September 2014 uses archetypes to help unfold this complex generation. To learn more, check out our infographic here: http://www.slideshare.net/ResourceInteractive/millenials-info-bheff2

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Then Life Happened: Millennials Out of Their Formative Years and Into The Fire

  1. 1. 1 Change to new logo, Add Ammirati to footer
  2. 2. 2© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Millennials’ Formative Events 1998 Clinton Impeached 2001 9/11 Start Afghan War 2003–2006 Iraq War 2005 Hurricane Katrina 2007–2009 Great Recession 1999 Columbine
  3. 3. 3© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Portrait of a Split Personality Multicultural & tolerant Open-minded & inclusive Information-adept Network-empowered Entrepreneurial Civic-minded Globally engaged Persistently optimistic Narcissistic Self-entitled Impatient Stressed Lax work ethic Extreme moral relativism Lack of empathy Poor coping skills
  4. 4. 4© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Paradoxically, They Are… 1. Prematurely affluent and suffer from financial melancholy. 2. A trophy generation now trying out “medium chill”—working toward good-enough. 3. A generation whose social media obsession has morphed into “professional narcissism.” 1 Neil Howe, The New York Times, March 26, 2013 2 David Roberts, grist.org, June 2011 3 Alissa Quart, Frontline, June 21, 2013
  5. 5. 5© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Archetypes Help to Unfold a Multi-Faceted Generation OPEN brands believe it is the consumer who is the real protagonist in a life they are making for themselves and others using age-old, mythical patterns, icons and characters as well as contemporary cues and content. Marketers consequently need insights into consumers’ life ambitions, self-concepts and sources of tension, and Jungian archetypes are ideally suited for generating these.
  6. 6. © ResourceAmmirati 2014 6 Methodology Proprietary iCitzen Persona Methodology Ongoing Study -literature reviews -ethnography studies -surveys Carol S. Pearson Carl Jung
  7. 7. 7© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Among the first wave of millennials, ages 18-33, 22% are more likely than the general population to identify with the Hero/Warrior archetype, 20% more likely for the Explorer, 15% more likely for the Creator, and 11% more likely for the Lover. Millennials’ Four Dominant Archetypes Source: ResourceAmmirati proprietary methodology
  8. 8. 8© ResourceAmmirati 2014 The Hero/Warrior Goal: Win, get own way, make a difference through struggle Fear: Weakness, powerlessness, impotence, ineptitude Response: Slay, defeat or convert it Task: High-level assertiveness; fighting for what really matters Gift: Courage, discipline, skill “Warriors live by, and when necessary, fight for, their own principles or values even when doing so is economically or socially costly.” -- Carol S. Pearson, Awakening the Heroes Within
  9. 9. 9© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Life Context of the Millennial Hero/Warrior Millennials’ stress level is a 5.4 out of 10; 3.6 is considered healthy. (American Psychological Association and Harris Interactive, 2013) Two-thirds of recent bachelor’s degree recipients have an average of $27,000 in student loan debt, almost double what it was two decades ago. (Urban Institute, 2013) Seven in 10 Americans say today’s young adults face more economic challenges than their elders did. (Pew Research, 2014) Millennials are becoming parents and professionals in a world marked by deepening ideological and financial divides. Their Hero instinct tells them to use their education and attitude to overcome the deep- rooted problems facing this generation. A third of older millennials have a four-year college degree or more—making them the best- educated cohort of young adults in American history. (Pew Research, 2014) Forty-nine percent of millennials say the country’s best years are ahead of them, compared with 42% of Gen Xers. (Pew Research, 2014) LIABILITIES ASSETS
  10. 10. 10© ResourceAmmirati 2014 In response to the Great Recession, the collapse of the dotcom bubble and today’s growing income equality, many millennials are defining success in less materialistic terms, opting for experiential riches. It’s not about owning more than the Joneses but about doing more with the Joneses—and then sharing the tales. Source: Thomas Picket, Capital in the Twenty-first Century
  11. 11. 11© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Building a Hero/Warrior Brand 1. Forge a Social Contract: For this generation more than any other, brands have social contracts. Make your corporate social responsibility initiatives part of your brand, not a sideline, and enable your Hero fans to identify with and contribute to your causes. 2. Achievement Appeal: Stress levels are high for older millennials so demonstrate to the achievement-oriented Hero how your product, services and business are at the top of their game and will help them get to the top of theirs.
  12. 12. 12© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Chipotle Millennial Heroes want to engage with Hero brands as change agents and have a causal rather than casual relationship with them. CHIPOTLE has rejected the herd mentality, particularly fast food’s relationship to factory farming. It focuses on changing our food culture where it needed it the most, while the brand voice balances calling out the food-industrial complex foes and keeping it lively and approachable.
  13. 13. 13© ResourceAmmirati 2014 SMART Millennials need a dose of humor and a lot of heart from their Hero brands. Nowhere is this more true than in the automotive industry, which is barely on millennials’ radar of preferred brands. Millennials aren’t buying cars like older generations due to their leaner, more urban millennial lifestyles—or is it that car marketing is in need of a reboot? SMART cars have been deftly exploiting their David essence and the gas-guzzling Goliath rivals. The brand’s tone mixes levity with a confident “go small or go home.”
  14. 14. 14© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Toms Millennial Heroes expect a cultural perspective that is backed by action. Marketing is deeds more than words, and for this cohort, brands are businesses with social contracts. Seventy-four percent of millennials believe businesses can do much more to address society’s challenges in the areas of most concern: resource scarcity (68%), climate change (65%) and income equality (64%). (Deloitte, Millennial Survey, 2014) TOMS matches every pair of shoes purchased with a pair of new shoes for a child in need. According to Toms, “What began as a simple idea has evolved into a powerful business model for helping address need and also advance health, education and economic opportunity for children and their communities around the world.”
  15. 15. 15© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Nintendo A majority of 18-34 year olds (57%) play video games at least three times a week. (Zogby Analytics, 2014) Gamification is important to millennials, and it plays directly to the Hero’s need to take on challenges and to be victorious. NINTENDO, with its stable of beloved characters and gaming systems designed to imitate users’ movements, has created new ways to collaborate—and compete. Whether competing with friends in the same room or connected through social experiences, the Nintendo customer is the epitome of the Hero/Warrior as they seek to slay the beast and beat their opponents. * ResourceAmmirati client
  16. 16. 16© ResourceAmmirati 2014 The Explorer Goal: Search for a better life or better way Fear: Conformity, becoming entrapped Response: Leave it, take off, escape Task: Be true to a deeper or higher truth Gift: Autonomy, ambition “The Explorer in each of us challenges us to explore what we fear most, so that by braving the unknown, we ourselves are transformed.” -- Carol S. Pearson, Awakening the Heroes Within
  17. 17. 17© ResourceAmmirati 2014 The Life Context of the Millennial Explorer The underemployment rate is 32.8% among those living at home and 15.4% among those living on their own. (Gallup, 2014) A strong entrepreneurial streak has emerged, driven by the cohort’s “digital native” skills and their social conscience. Fifty-four percent of millennials either want to start a business or have already started one. (Kauffman Foundation, 2011) Achieving autonomy is a goal keenly felt by those first-wave millennials who have delayed marriage, buying a home and having children. Economic constraints keep 36% of 18- 31 year olds living at home with parents (Pew Research 2012), which prompted research into the new “emerging adulthood” life chapter. Millennials’ trailblazer orientation is most evident when it comes to employment. On average, millennials stay with a company only two years, compared with five years for Gen X and seven years for boomers. (Millennial Branding, 2013) Men are redefining their role; the number of men who are the primary household grocery shopper increased to 31% in 2011, up from 14% in 1985. (US Chamber of Commerce Foundation, 2012) The most racially and ethnically diverse cohort in the US; 43 percent are non-white, so perhaps not surprisingly, 55 percent favor a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. (Pew Research, 2014)
  18. 18. 18© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Millennials going their own way to seek authenticity and spiritual depth? As adolescents, they were described as profoundly team- oriented and not particularly individualistic or introspective. What happened on the way to adulthood? Some of millennials’ Explorer traits are undoubtedly tied to their life stage, an early mid-point on the journey of life that typically sees individuals turn inward to cultivate the Soul after the Ego has been formed.
  19. 19. 19© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Building an Explorer Brand 1. Acts of Independence: Explorers prize autonomy, but the economy has thwarted rites of passage into adulthood for many. Empower Explorers to achieve independence in small acts or unconventional ways. 2. Freedom Focus: Assure Explorers that in a conformist age, you’re with them as they journey down the road less traveled, and associate your brand with movement, free will and the pursuit of higher truths.
  20. 20. 20© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Virgin Millennials’ desire to have a large variety of experiences and travel often includes exposing themselves to a certain amount of danger in the pursuit of excitement. Seventy percent of millennials agreed that “visiting every continent in my lifetime could be an achievement and is something I’d like to do” vs. 48% of non-millennials. (Barklay, The Enigma Generation, 2011) VIRGIN’s Explorer culture stands out even in the travel category, thanks to founder Richard Branson, who is currently working on a public space travel program.
  21. 21. 21© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Red Bull Millennial Explorers in search of deeper revelations about the world favor brands that push conventional boundaries: 69% support legalizing marijuana, up from 34% eight years ago, and 68% favor same-sex marriage, up from 44% in 2004. (Pew Research, 2014) RED BULL, befitting an Explorer brand, can be consumed on the go, and to drive home the point, the beverage brand’s philosophy is to give “wings to people and ideas.” The brand finds those wings far from the mainstream of sports, in cliff diving and downhill bike racing through Rio’s most notorious barrios.
  22. 22. 22© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Airbnb The sharing economy had projected revenues of $3.5 billion in 2013. Millennials have been culturally hardwired to borrow, rent and share not just out of economic necessity but also due to their determination not to be entrapped in the living-to- work cycle of their parents. AIRBNB offers a more authentic local and shared experience, as well as a new way to make money.
  23. 23. 23© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Schwinn Cycling is on the rise for millennials due to high fuel costs, urbanization and a deeper understanding of environmental factors. This cohort drives about 20% less than their parents’ generation (PIRG, 2013) and seeks brands that help their Explorer self to travel more freely. SCHWINN is well-attuned to this generation’s travelling aspirations and seeks to help all of its customers “enjoy the ride” of life and the bike ride of the moment. * ResourceAmmirati client
  24. 24. 24© ResourceAmmirati 2014 The Creator Goal: Creation of a life, work or new reality of any kind Fear: Inauthenticity, miscreation, failure of imagination Response: Accept that it is part of the self, part of what one has created; be willing to create another reality Task: Self-creation, self-acceptance Gift: Autonomy, ambition “The ability to see and name that potential in oneself or another is the primary creative act of liberation. It is only when we begin to uncover who we are—beneath insecurity and grandiosity, beneath ingrained habit and social conditioning, beyond our outer appearance and our persona—that we can have some confidence that our actions are helping to expand rather than shrink our individual, collective and world Soul.” -- Carol S. Pearson, Awakening the Heroes Within
  25. 25. 25© ResourceAmmirati 2014 The Life Context of the Millennial Creator They are in a league of their own when it comes to producing online content—60% compared with 20% for non-millennials. (Barkley, SMG, Boston Consulting Group, American Millennials: Deciphering the Enigma Generation, 2011) When asked "what word best defines the DNA of your generation?” the most frequent response is “creative" and the second most frequent is “self-expressive.” (MTV’s Innovation Generation study, 2012) Many millennials are early adopters. Fifty-two percent of millennials rank far above or above average when it comes to being early adopters of technology. (Experian, 2013 Digital Marketers Report) Newer platforms like Snapchat enable experimental venues for self- expression. Seventeen percent of millennials (18-34) use Snapchat on a monthly basis. (Comscore, 2014) Thirty percent of millennials’ media time is spent with content created and curated by their peers, which means they are also acting as “always-on” publishers. (Crowdtap/Ipsos, 2014) Millennials far outpace others with the amount of content they create and consume. They also have “slashitude,” as in “I’m a retail associate/CEO/Techno DJ/food stylist.” The trend toward personal branding and professional narcissism is a method for identifying millennials’ passions.
  26. 26. 26© ResourceAmmirati 2014 The challenge for many millennial Creators is to find the right balance between creating and being created by their social conditions. This cohort craves validation and social proof that the self and life they’re creating are worthwhile. But the sheer magnitude of their digital output has enabled them to continuously self-create and recreate, resulting in a generation of “mashionalities,” comprised of the free artistic and information riches of the web and animated by the videogame prerogative to reset and play again.
  27. 27. 27© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Building a Creator Brand 1. Let Them Express Themselves: The challenge for many millennials is to create and self-express in order to forge an identity and do work that is authentically one’s own. Align your brand with the Creator’s quest for self-discovery. 2. New Realms and Reinvention: Millennials are the first generation to have their entire life, juvenile faux pas and all, exposed to the public, but Creators need the possibility of reinvention. Provide ways for your Creator fans to inhabit another world and persona temporarily.
  28. 28. 28© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Taco Bell Platforms like Instagram and Snapchat, which enable users to create and erase, provide experimental venues for self-expression that don’t have the high cost associated with other social platforms’ permanent digital record. TACO BELL is the QSR brand for the millennial generation. Leveraging platforms like Snapchat and Instagram, the brand encourages customers to co-create the brand, extending Taco Bell’s stories and driving pop culture.
  29. 29. 29© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Google Creator brands should provide ways for their fans to inhabit another world and persona for a while. GOOGLE is on millennials’ favorite brands list in no small part because they would like to work at a company that offers perks and “balance enhancers,” including its policy of allowing employees one day a week to work on personal projects. (“Generational differences in work values: A review of the empirical evidence,” Journal of Management, 2010)
  30. 30. 30© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Etsy The disintermediating web has made it possible for anyone to promote and sell their own creations. Brands hoping to appeal to millennial Creators can learn from these P2P marketplaces, particularly the manner in which the creative legacy or personal inspiration for the product is conveyed. ETSY is one of the definitive marketplaces for the maker movement, connecting creators with customers who are looking for something special that can’t be purchased elsewhere.
  31. 31. 31© ResourceAmmirati 2014 DiGiorno Small acts of creativity constitute the oxygen for this generation, but given interesting goals and parameters for co-creation, millennials will respond even more favorably, as they seize the opportunity to stretch themselves. DIGIORNO lets customers co-create the brand with engaging experiences like build your own pizza and Twitter trash talking with #DiGiorNOYOUDIDNT. * ResourceAmmirati client
  32. 32. 32© ResourceAmmirati 2014 The Lover Goal: Bliss, oneness, unity Fear: Loss of love, disconnection Response to problem: Love it Task: Follow your bliss, commit to what you love Gift: Commitment, passion, ecstasy “We know Eros when we experience a passionate connection to a particular landscape, to our work, to an activity, to a cause, a religion, a way of life. Without Eros, we can be born but never really live; our Souls simply never fall to earth. It is Eros—passion, attachment, desire, even lust—that makes us really alive.” -- Carol S. Pearson, Awakening the Heroes Within
  33. 33. 33© ResourceAmmirati 2014 The Life Context of the Millennial Lover Fifty-seven percent of those surveyed say they tell their friends about their purchases; 44% prefer to “show off” their purchases, even if it’s in subtle ways, seeking constant reassurance. (Moosylvania, 2014) Millennials are twice as likely as Gen Xers to say that they were influenced by celebrities and four times more likely than boomers. (BCG, 2014) Seventy percent of millennials are more excited about a decision they’ve made when their friends agree, compared with 48% of non- millennials. (Barkley, 2013) The real power of this archetype is in the millennials’ ever- present digital togetherness. This generation is connected like no other in search of their chief values: happiness, passion, diversity, sharing and discovery. Millennials are also charitable and keen to participate in “public life”: 63% of millennials donate to charities, 43% actively volunteer or are a member of a community organization and 52% have signed petitions. (Deloitte, The Millennial Survey, 2014) When asked what would have the most influence on them, more than 95% of millennials say they want brands to court them actively and have coupons sent to them. (Accenture, Who are the Millennial Shoppers?, June 2013) Forty million millennials are already parents and 52% of millennials rank parenting as one of the most important things they can do with their lives. (Pew Research, 2014)
  34. 34. 34© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Millennials are less trusting of people in general and a recent report shows them subordinating friendships to career advancement more readily than boomers. But their digital connection to others creates a diffuse but ever-present sense of “being in this together” that has translated into a tolerance of and curiosity about other cultures and peoples. And their intimate involvement with digital media turns brands into friends, friends into brands, and the self into a dispersal of passions big and small.
  35. 35. 35© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Building a Lover Brand 1. Eros, Not Ego: Millennials are nothing if not egotistically developed, so the Lover brand’s role is to encourage a fuller giving into Eros (not Ego)— passionate involvement with a cause, culture, place, idea or set of experiences. 2. (Really) Be There For Them: Millennials expect more from brands than other cohorts: brands should know their Lover fans personally, court them deftly and facilitate more social graph intimacy and interactivity.
  36. 36. 36© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Smirnoff The spirits category is far less homogenous than one would imagine, with Outlaws, Rules and Lovers aplenty. Millennial lovers warm to cultural codes of group fun, of social cohesion and tribal belonging, a pivot away from boomer’s codes of close encounters. SMIRNOFF, to stand out from the pack, has positioned itself as being about inclusivity and unpretentiousness by mocking mixologists and “VIPing.” The message separates the brand from claims of exclusivity and speaks to millennials inclination toward “the more the merrier.”
  37. 37. 37© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Coca-Cola Millennials appear to be shifting away from what used to be the be-all and end-all, money and power, in favor of happiness, passion, diversity, sharing and discovery. (Iconoculture, Consumer Insights, 2013) COCA-COLA remains a millennials’ favorite because its happiness message hasn’t dimmed in decades. It still resonates because of the brand’s clever marketing of friendship and interpersonal connection—from customized cans sent to strangers to vending machines the world over that require social interaction and other passionate feats before they’ll dispense a drink.
  38. 38. 38© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Sephora Millennials are far more data-disclosive than boomers (Mintel, 2014) because they grew up grasping and negotiating the balance of sharing personal preference and habits in exchange for personal perks and coupons. Millennial Lovers have high expectations of personalized brand interactions. SEPHORA’s push into personalization, from the sortable “My Beauty Bag” filled with a fan’s past purchases and favorites to the in-store Pantone and ColorIQ system, reminds customers that Sephora is the go-to brand for creatively expressing one’s persona and learning just what that persona is.
  39. 39. 39© ResourceAmmirati 2014 VS Pink The connective tissue of this cohort leads Lover millennials to use their network to help them make decisions, including what to buy, while also desiring to be courted by their favorite brands. VS PINK has redefined sexy, downplaying the romance and intimacy of Victoria’s Secret while emphasizing flirty fun. Particularly appealing to college age millennials is the brand’s focus on the connection fans have to the college or university of their choice, and leveraging brand ambassadors on campus to court co-eds and spread the love. * ResourceAmmirati client
  40. 40. 40© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Forge a Social Contract: For this generation more than any other, brands have social contracts. Make your corporate social responsibility initiatives part of your brand, not a sideline, and enable your Hero fans to identify with and contribute to your causes. Achievement Appeal: Stress levels are high for older millennials so demonstrate to the achievement-oriented Hero how your product, services and business are at the top of their game and will help them get to the top of theirs. Acts of Independence: Explorers prize autonomy, but the economy has thwarted rites of passage into adulthood for many. Empower Explorers to achieve independence in small acts or unconventional ways. Freedom Focus: Assure Explorers that in a conformist age, you’re with them as they journey down the road less traveled, and associate your brand with movement, free will and the pursuit of higher truths. Hero/Warrior Explorer Let Them Express Themselves: The challenge for many millennials is to create and self-express in order to forge an identity and do work that is authentically one’s own. Align your brand with the Creator’s quest for self-discovery. New Realms and Reinvention: Millennials are the first generation to have their entire life, juvenile faux pas and all, exposed to the public, but Creators need the possibility of reinvention. Provide ways for your Creator fans to inhabit another world and persona temporarily. Creator Eros, Not Ego: Millennials are nothing if not egotistically developed, so the Lover brand’s role is to encourage a fuller giving in to Eros (not Ego)—passionate involvement with a cause, culture, place, idea or set of experiences. (Really) Be There For Them: Millennials expect more from brands than other cohorts: brands should know their Lover fans personally, court them deftly and facilitate more social graph intimacy and interactivity. Lover
  41. 41. 41© ResourceAmmirati 2014 Who We Are Born digital, ResourceAmmirati is an entrepreneurial creative independent with 400+ associates across five offices. We help ambitious marketers like Coca-Cola, CVS, Nestlé, North American Breweries, P&G, Pirate’s Booty, Sherwin-Williams and Victoria’s Secret build OPEN brands and embrace “everywhere commerce” to accelerate growth. TO LEARN MORE: Dr. Nita Rollins Futurist, Director of Cultural Insights nrollins@resource.com www.resource.com

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