Millennials and Culinary

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The power and Influence of the Millennial generation is undeniable as they are the largest generation in American history and hold an estimated $200 billion in purchasing power. 40% of Millennials are self-decribed "Foodies" and they engage with culinary on an almost daily basis through food television, cooking, looking for recipes online, underground dinner/supper clubs, food & wine events, and going out to eat with friends. If you are interested in speaking to the Millennial audience then culinary initiatives should absolutely be a part of your marketing program.

Millennials and Culinary

  1. 1. Millennials & Culinary
  2. 2. Note from ConnectAbout 2 years ago I started working with Iron Chef Marc Forgione and began, what would be the start of my transition into theCulinary Industry. At that time, I knew there was some passion for food, but I never could have imagined discovering the true insatiableappetite millions of people have for it across the world.Even more surprising was my realization that the Millennial Generation, our most powerful and influential, are not only into food, butleading the charge and setting trends, becoming tastemakers and changing way we consume food as we know it. They are spendingwhat disposable income they have on it, are inquisitive about where their food comes from, are creating, experimenting and developingideas that truly will change the way we eat and live for generations to come.From a marketers perspective, I was always taught that the best time to talk to a consumer is when they are at a heightened level ofemotion, be that at a sports game or music concert. But the culinary culture, takes it to a new level. It’s a high level of emotion, it’sintimate, it’s conversive, it’s participatory and maybe most importantly, you control the experience. As you will see in the pages ahead,the numbers don’t lie and they are powerful, impactful and only getting stronger.So I guess the question is, how are you reaching Millennials to shape them into your brand ambassadors for life? If you haventconsidered Food, Wine and the Epicurean Lifestyle as a platform to do so, then you might be missing the gravy boat (all pun intended).Sports and Entertainment will always be incredible forces to reach people in a strong and passionate setting, but its my belief that Foodand the Culinary Culture is not only a viable third option for the Millennial generation, but all people across the world.Thanks for the taking the time to read the following, I hope its informative and helpful and we have an opportunity to speak soon.All the best,Lonny SweetCEO – The Connect Group
  3. 3. “Lately, however, food has become a defining obsession among a wideswath of the young and urbane. It is not golf or opera. It’s more likeindie rock. Just like the music of, say, Drag City bands on a ninetiescampus, food is now viewed as a legitimate option for a hobby, a topicof endless discussion, a playground for one-upmanship, and ameasuring stick of cool. ”– Michael Idov,“TheYoung Foodie Culture”, NewYork Magazine
  4. 4. MilŸlenŸnŸial:A term used to describe a segment of the population born between 1980 and 2000(approximately). Sometimes referred to in the media as “Generation Y,” millennials are thechildren of the post-WWII baby boomer generation.•  There are approximately 80 million Millennials in the United States•  Largest generation in American history•  Most ethnically diverse generation in American history with 41% in the racial minority category•  Millennials are more tech-savvy and concentrated on social networking than any other generation: •  93% are avid internet users •  75% of Millennials are engaged with social networking sites •  Prefer brands with a strong social-mobile presence •  Influence of media on Millennials is 2-3 times higher than other generations •  70% won’t make a major decision without social networking input•  Millenials have enormous purchasing power: •  Hold an estimated $200 billion in spending power •  74% believe they can inspire the purchase decisions of peers and those in other generations •  In 10-15 years Millennials will make up the majority spending group in the U.S. •  52% more likely than any other generation to make impulse purchases
  5. 5. Millennials in the Culinary Space“We have long since moved past the vague idea that the personal is political to the notion thatthe epicurean is essential.”—Gina Bellafante, “The Unaffordable Luxury of Food”, The New York Times•  Last year, Millennials spent more than $73 billion on foodservice meals and snacks•  Millennials eat out more often than non-Millennials: 3.4 versus 2.8 times per week•  36% purchase their meals away from home•  42% visit “upscale casual-dining restaurants” at least once a month•  65% go out to eat with friends•  Food/Dining are third on a list (at 73%) of products/services that Millennials are willing to pay a premium for, ranking above electronics, apparel, footwear, & health/beauty products•  87% will splurge on a nice meal even when money is tight•  40% are self-described “foodies” – that’s more than 25 Million Millennial Foodies in the US•  In a survey of what two types of TV shows were of highest interest, 24% of Millennials said “Cooking Shows”, making it the #2 preferred on the list
  6. 6. Millennials in the Kitchen“The kitchen where Millennials grew up is similar to the one they hope one day to recreate intheir own homes. They believe that Mom’s kitchen was special – a warm and wonderful placeto gather. “ ---AIM study: MILLENNIALS at HOME…In The Kitchen•  65% love cooking and consider themselves experts in the kitchen•  When cooking at home, 86% of Millennials enjoy experimenting with new recipes•  58% buy utensils, cookware and other kitchen items if they need them for a new recipe or cooking technique•  They seek a "warmth factor" for the kitchen because it generates fond memories of their parents kitchens.  58% described their dream kitchen as "comfortable." 43% said it would be "warm and cozy."
  7. 7. Millennials and Wine/Spirits“There are nearly 80 million Millennials; by 2018, all of them will be of legal drinking age. Millennials arethe wine consumers of today and tomorrow. Those allied to the wine industry would be wise to sit up andtake notice of this group. They may just hold the future of wine in their relatively young but capablehands.” –Lauren Edwards, Associate Editor, Technomic, Inc.•  Millennials most closely mirror what the Wine Market Council terms “high-end wine buyers” (people who buy bottles prices at more than $20 at least once a month)•  According to a recent Nielson survey, nearly 25% of Millennials purchase wine over $20, compared to 12% of baby boomers and 14% Generation Xers•  Millennials are more likely to try wines they’ve never heard of before and more likely to visit wine bars than any other demographic•  An astounding 35% of older Millennials between the ages of 25-34 drink wine at least once a month, representing the second largest age group of wine drinkers. They are just .2% behind the largest age group of wine drinkers, which are individuals between the ages of 55-64.•  Millennials are willing to experiment in their selection of alcoholic beverages: •  More than one in three (36 percent) surveyed by Technomic say they tried a new alcoholic drink on their last away-from-home occasion, compared to 28 percent of the overall sample. •  85% of Millennials "frequently" or "occasionally" purchase unfamiliar brands of wine•  The Wine Market Council found that Millennials were twice as likely as Baby Boomers to cite the importance of a “fun and contemporary” wine label. To Millennials, labels can make or break a product (think brands like “Yellowtail” and “TXT”)•  In 2010, 44% of Krug drinkers were Millennials
  8. 8. What / Who is Leading the Millennial Charge? Trend of the Millennial GenerationHopefully we have established Food & Wine as a viable marketing platform to reach Millennials, so the question becomeswhat and who are the change agents and trends to drive business forward. While this is a moving target, much likeMillennials themselves, here are a few things to keep your eyes on:•  Food Bloggers •  In addition to being the primary readership audience of food blogs, more and more Millennials are authoring food blogs themselves such as Big Girls Small Kitchen, The Amateur Gourmet, and The Wednesday Chef•  Pop-Up Dinners/Underground Supper Clubs •  Pop-Up/Underground Dinner parties are becoming a more conventional option for dining out. In a recent NY Times review of Louro restaurant, Pete Wells praise the Chef’s Monday night prix-fixe menu based on his past Um Segredo supper clubs held in his apartment•  “Chefs as Rock Stars”: •  Chefs are seen as trendsetters, hipsters, and rockstars and because of this are being considered as viable alternatives to Athletes and Entertainers in traditional media/endorsements•  Casual F&W Events •  Food and Wine events are veering away from the stuffiness and through the integration of other elements, such as music, sports, and entertainment, are becoming more approachable for the Millennial generation•  Casual Fine Dining •  “You can now eat just as quality food with a great environment without the fuss and the feeling of sitting at the grown-up table” -- From “TheYoung Foodie Culture”, NewYork Magazine
  9. 9. Millennials, Culinary, & Social Media“One of the most interesting things we’ve been seeing happening among Millennials in that space isthe photography of food and how food has become a personal expression — a personal extension— of the generation. They want to try new types of foods, new fusions, new experiences anddocument those. I can’t tell you how many times you can see food pictures on Instagram, on Twitter,on Facebook of food and what people are eating.” – Danielle Meglen, Director of Ad Sales Research forViacom, in Nation’s Restaurant News•  Millennials spend hours online "crowd sourcing" recipes and ingredients with 47% finding recipes online.  •  Twitter: •  88% of users are Millennials •  Some chefs/culinary figures have over 1 million followers such as Anthony Bourdain (1.1 million), Jamie Oliver (2.7 million), and Gordon Ramsay (1.26 million)•  Pinterest: •  1.36 million daily users, 35% of those are Millennials •  11% of boards are food-related and it is the single most fastest-growing category•  Instagram: •  90 million active users, 35% are Millennials •  11 million photographs tagged with #food
  10. 10. So What’s This All Mean?“If you want to talk to and have a relationship with the Millennial generation, then the Food,Wine & Epicurean Lifestyle should be an integral part of your overall Marketing Mix. Period!”– Lonny Sweet, Millennials and Culinary“They talk about food and restaurants incessantly, and their social lives are organized around them.Some are serious home cooks who seek to duplicate the feats of their chef-heroes in their ownkitchens; others barely use a stove. Above all, they are avowed culinary agnostics whose centralmotivation is simply to hunt down and enjoy the next most delicious meal…”– Michael Idov,“TheYoung Foodie Culture”, NewYork Magazine “Generation Y has a game-changing approach to food consumption that will definitely affect how other demographics, including Gen Xs and Baby Boomers, shop and eat” – Kimberly Egan, CEO of CCD, in “How GenY Eats Culinary Trend Mapping Report” “Millennials are much bigger "foodies" than their parents or grandparents. Many are more educated and better-traveled than Boomers were at similar ages. Millennials are likely to have been exposed to more ethnic types of food than their parents. They have grown up with the Food Channel, cooking shows, rock-star and celebrity chefs and upscale or specialty food stores” – Bob Giblin,“Millennial Generation with Shape Food, Farming Trends”
  11. 11. Summary•  Power and Influence of the Millennial generation is undeniable•  Food & Wine is one of the highest ranking interest points of the Millennial generation•  40% of Millennials are self-described “Foodies” and have a strong emotional connection to the Food, Wine & Epicurean lifestyle.•  Millennials engage in culinary on an almost daily basis via food television, cooking, finding recipes online, underground dinner/supper clubs, food & wine events and going out to eat with friends/co-workers•  If you are interested in gaining the Millennial customer, then Food & Wine initiatives should be a part of your Marketing mix
  12. 12. Lonny Sweetlsweet@theconnectgrp.com (617) 905-5711

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