Meet the post-Millennials, Generation Edge—the children of Gen-X parents who’ve only known a world teetering on the brink of economic, political and environmental collapse. The Edge is reactionary, it’s the result of being forced to carve an identity out of uncertainty and complexity. Unlike their Millennial cousins, Generation Edge is more realistic, resilient and resourceful and these characteristics will have a huge impact on your business going forward.
The Sound Research, www.thesoundresearch.com, a strategic research and brand consultancy, has coined the term for those born from 1995 until now – Generation Edge (www.generationedge.com). This newest group of consumers to come of age are the children of Generation X and grandchildren of Boomers. Gen-Edge stands on the edge of political and economic collapse, and the days of the self-entitlement of their older cousins, The Millennials, are no more.
Gen-Edge goals and aspirations are being anchored in a new reality. These young men and women are wise beyond their years to give themselves the edge they need to face the world’s uncertain future.
The Sound experts found that with parents living through a recession and no guarantee of higher education, when it comes to making it, Gen-Edge is not expecting it to be easy. They don’t mind sparing a little elbow grease to make things happen. They are stepping up to the plate and forming a unique identity out of uncertainty and complexity. They have seen 9/11, war, serial natural disasters, foreclosures, celebrity public meltdowns – all live, then again on video on demand – and lived to tweet about it.
Gen-Edge ‘coolness’ comes from their ability to roll with the punches from the get-go. This new generation has got a lot of character – they are realistic, resilient and resourceful. Millennials grew up believing they were going to be the next billionaire or social media founder. Whereas, the world Gen-Edge is growing up in … well, let’s just say optimism is in short supply.
Using a methodology of online engagement, video diaries and experts, The Sound determined that Gen-Edge is fast-tracking their lives – putting them well on their way to becoming one of the largest (*74 million and counting) and most influential group of consumers ever. What does this mean for advertisers and marketers? A specialist in understanding “growing up” at whatever age that happens, Ian Pierpoint of The Sound will tell you.