Halloween Provides A Glimpse Into The Top Millennial Trends

Halloween isn’t just a chance to dress up, eat lots of candy, and watch scary movies. It’s a major time for marketers to understand consumers who are expected to spend $8 billion on the holiday this year. Besides tricks and treats, Halloween provides perspective on some of the biggest trends...just take a look at what people are dressing up as and how they get their costume ideas. So in the spirit of Halloween, we spoke to more than 700 Millennials about their Halloween outfits and inspiration, and many of our findings offer insights to further understand this generation.

WaldoThe ‘90s Are All That

It’s no secret that Millennials are nostalgic for the ‘90s, but Halloween highlights just how much they miss this decade and the simpler times that it represents. Many Millennials mentioned that they dressed up/are dressing up as iconic characters from ‘90s TV shows, books, video games, and even board games because these characters and objects are meaningful to them. For example, one Millennial told us that she dressed as Ms. Frizzle from the books and show “The Magic School Bus” because she loved the series growing up and still thinks it’s awesome. Another said he dressed as Chuckie from “Rugrats” because he too enjoyed it as a kid and still does thanks to reruns. Another Millennial said she's being a character from Candy Land, which is particularly relevant with the resurgence of board games. Numerous other young people mentioned that they're dressing as Pokeman, Mario (from Super Mario Bros.), Waldo, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and the always popular Disney princesses. As many of these characters are coming back through reboots or the wave of ‘90s nostalgia taking culture by storm, Millennials are very much excited and want to show their enthusiasm for this period.

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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “I won’t buy an already-made costume to dress up in for Halloween because most of the ready-made options for women are overly sexualized.” –Female, 19, TX

She's a Barbie girl, but it's not exactly a Barbie world. It’s been a hard year for the blondest toy, as we’ve detailed before, and sales of the doll have continued to fall, dropping another 21% in the third quarter of this year. American Girl doll sales also dropped during that time period, and the struggles highlight how the “affections of the target audience—little girls—can be fleeting.” But there are plenty of other potential reasons for Barbie’s tough times: Girls today want edgier dolls, and spend more on tech toys. (Huffington PostBusiness Insider

If done right, young consumers have proven they will continue to buy tickets to see superheroes on screen, and there are a lot more of these movies in the works. This week, Warner Brothers announced plans for 10 new DC comics superhero movies over the next five years, including Wonder WomanAquaman, and The Flash. A movie featuring Lego Batman is also being fast-tracked for next year, so kids and adults alike can look forward to another fix of awesome. (Wired)

It’s 13 days until Halloween, and this year could be the most costume-filled holiday ever. A recent survey has shown that over two thirds of Americans plan to buy a costume, the most in eleven years. The fact that Halloween falls on a Friday has likely been a factor in the boost. Ypulse’s own most recent bi-weekly survey found that 36% of 13-32-year-olds plan to don in a costume to celebrate, 30% of those who plan to dress up will buy a pre-made costume, while 54% say they will purchase some items to make a costume of their own. (Ad Age)

MAC cosmetics is creating an entirely new kind of store that will target today’s teens and tweens. The stores will be designed completely differently to appeal to the younger consumers, including a “major focus on selfies” and a table full of products to sample on the spot. When explaining the new approach, global brand president Karen Buglisi Weiler told WWD, “One store doesn't fit all…You have to be in the world of customization and relevancy now." The first location opened over the summer in Orlando, and is reportedly already one of MAC’s top five stores in North America. (Racked)

Some of the hottest tech startups today are part of the “photo economy.” Millennials and teens have made their penchant for visual communication clear, and helped to make multiple photo sharing apps into huge success stories. Now entrepreneurs are fighting into the space with photo apps that put an emphasis on “storytelling, shopping, and storage.” Competition is tough, and so far the many startups that have tried to make photos shoppable have not succeeded. But still clearly the apps to know next will likely have something to do with this picture-obsession. (Fast Company)

Did you know that thanks to our bi-weekly survey of 1000 14-32-year-olds nationwide, we track trends in social media, entertainment viewing, earnings, spending, and more? Our Silver and Gold subscribers get access to regularly updated charts following average daily spend and items purchased broken out by age and gender. We do the heavy data lifting, and we’re constantly adding new data to our trends. (Ypulse)

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