Most analysts and marketers know that younger consumers have typically been bigger Internet users than older consumers. Web use by younger consumers is nearly ubiquitous (93%) while adults over age 65 now have a usage rate of 65%. The bigger news, according to a Pew Internet and American Life Project report, is that the type of Internet use varies drastically by age group.
Teens form a ready market for sporting goods equipment and apparel. Members of this demographic may be playing sports on school teams or exercising for fitness. And this demographic also possesses its own spending money.
As the digital universe increasingly consumes the time of teens and young adults, is there any reason for marketers to use traditional media when they introduce new products and brands? The results of the Cassandra Multicultural Report 2009 indicate that traditional media continues to influence teens and there’s a big difference when it comes to ethnic heritage. A couple of top-line statistics from the report may come as no big surprise. The Internet and TV ads both serve as a source of information about new products for over half of all consumers between the ages of 14-24.
The detailed findings in this report hold valuable information for marketers planning their next product release for teens and young adults, especially when it comes to media channels beyond the Internet and TV. For example, Asian-American consumers in this age group report the following percentages of influence:
Retail stores 37%
Social networking sites 27%
Direct mail 17%
The chief information source, after the Internet and TV ads, for young Black consumers is entertainment in the form of TV shows and movies. Over 1/3 (35%) of this group learns about new products through TV shows and movies. For young Hispanic consumers, retail stores serve as the information source (32%) on new brands.
Marketers may wonder whether using celebrities makes a difference when marketing to younger consumers. The only ethnic group that weighed in as high as 10% for this factor was Blacks.
This report indicates that while the Internet reigns supreme as an information source, marketers who might want to stand out or reach a specific demographic should also use alternate media forms that are important to specific ethnic groups of young consumers.
[Source: The Cassandra Multicultural Report 2009, Reprinted in Youth Markets Alert, epm.com, 10.1.09]