Advertising to Children Who Use Tablets, and Their Parents

BY Rachel Cagle
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Millennials may have their smartphones, but members of Gen Z are sticking close to their handheld tablets. Advertising to children through ads on their tablets can be an effective way to have brand messaging reach both the brand's target audience and their parents (the true source of the spending money behind this audience). According to a study by YouGov Omnibus, 65% of surveyed Americans ages eight to 17 report that they use a tablet on a regular basis. Here’s how the yeses were broken down by age group:

  • 8 to 11-​year-​olds: 74%
  • 12 to 14-​year-​olds: 67%
  • 15 to 17-​year-​olds: 52%

81% of these regulars are the tablet’s owner as well. Approximately 77% of eight to 11-​year olds, 78% of 12 to 14-​year-​olds and 90% of 15 to 17-​year-​olds reported owning the tablets that they so frequently use. This number is only likely to grow in the future. About 9% of surveyed kids who don’t own a tablet say that it’s the number one item on their lists of things they want, so a tablet could be a likely present for upcoming birthdays and holidays.

Advertising to Children Using Tablets

Not only do a majority of members of this generation use and own tablets, many of these kids have unlimited access to their devices. Fifteen to 17-​year-​olds have the most freedom on these devices with a whooping 79% claiming that they have limitless access to their tablets and 50% of 12- to 14-​year-​olds also have unlimited use. While only 28% of eight to 11-​year-​olds have unlimited tablet access, another 40% of this age group is allowed to use the tablet whenever they want to, but for a limited amount of time.

This makes tablets a useful medium for digital advertisers offering products for this age group. Now, you may be thinking that this group doesn’t have much buying power, so why bother advertising to children? The answer: They have voices that go directly into the ears of their parents who do have spending money. How are parents and other family members going to know what to get this generation as presents? Most of the time, instead of taking a wild guess with a high likelihood of getting their kids something that they don't want, they'll ask their kids directly what it is they'd like for birthdays and holidays. Or, even if they don't, kids usually aren't shy about telling their parents about the things they want. With the right advertising before their eyes, these kids will likely run up and tell their parents that they’d like exactly what was advertised.

Around 75% of Gen Zers surveyed use their tablets to watch videos, nearly 60% listen to music on their tablets, roughly 45% have email accounts and a little over 40% get on social media via tablet. These habits present a number of opportunities for advertisers, including pre-​roll video, email, social and radio ads.

If your clients would like to know more about advertising to tablet users, AdMall from SalesFuel’s Audience Scan can provide further insight into tablet user demographics and advertising attitudes.