The Millennial Meal Plan

Today's post comes from Ypulse team member Gwen Radsch.

The Millennial Meal Plan

Food ArticleAs the US Census has frequently reported, the Millennial generation is extremely diverse. With this diversity comes an exposure to many different cultures, including traditional, and not-so-traditional, cuisine. International is becoming local and the flavors of every country have never been so easy to find as they are today. For example, in our Lifeline Report on Food and Beverage habits among Millennials conducted earlier this year, we found that 33% consume rice, almond, or soy milk at least occasionally. These types of milks were pretty rare not too long ago, but now a full third of Millennials consider them a standard part of their diet.

Millennials are approaching food and meals in a very different way; it is less about just grabbing a bite and more about creating a memory. A quick look at Instagram, Pinterest, or the many Tumblrs devoted to food will show you that this generation doesn’t just expect a meal at the dinner table, but rather to have an influential experience. Fully 1 in 5 (21%) Millennials report that they have attended a food festival which shows how food has evolved into more than just calories, but instead evokes a communal experience that was once reserved for music and Star Trek.

Recently, much has been made of the fact that Millennials are less brand loyal than Boomers when it comes to food purchases. It is possible that the economy is impacting whether this generation is willing to pay extra for a brand name, but given that they are in a highly experimental time in their lives, many of them cooking for themselves for the first time, it is more likely they haven’t figured out which aisle in the supermarket fits them best. The critical question, however, is do they even…

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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “My significant other and I had known of each other since grade school, but we connected at first on social media.” 

–Male, 20, WY

Fourteen percent of Millennials 18-32-years-old are currently parents, and they’re becoming an influential majority as they simultaneously take over the workplace. Balancing work and childrearing will likely be a priority for the generation, and while young parents today want longer maternity and paternity leaves, this type of flexibility is not often offered. For those with older children, parents want the ability to make children’s mid-day events, even if they have to work later at night to make up for it. Tech companies are “leading the pack” in providing good parental leave policies, and if talent begins to leave due to inflexible policies, other industries could follow suit. (Fast Company)

Kids today are more stressed out than ever, but one school’s effort to lesson their load has parents up in arms. In an effort to combat students’ frustration, exhaustion, lack of family time, and loss of interest in learning, a public elementary school in New York City recently assigned students the tasks of reading books and spending time with their families instead of traditional homework. However, parents are threatening to take kids out of school in protest, and have even assigned their own homework to “fill the gap.” Parenting trends currently lean towards the intense, competitive, and overprotective, and we’ll be interested to see if the pendulum swings as more Millennials become parents of K-12 kids. (DNAinfo)

Instagram is a vital Snapshot Marketing platform, and they’re introducing even more features for brands who want to appeal to young, visually-driven consumers. The app will now host sponsored, carousel-style posts featuring multiple photos that can be flipped through until the user is given the option to click for additional content. The new format “allows for sequential storytelling,” and has the potential to draw more brands to advertise on the platform, which is already bigger than Twitter with 300 million monthly users globally. (Adweek)

Always’s original “Like A Girl” ad was included in Ypulse’s round up of our favorite marketing of 2014 for standing out in the category of grown up girl-powered marketing. Now the brand has released a follow-up in honor of International Women’s Day with a new spot that features girls all over the world scoring, experimenting, running, calculating, and climbing “like a girl.” After the original ad aired during the Super Bowl this year, Always reported that 79% of women and 59% of men 16-24-years-old said it had altered their perception of what “like a girl” means. The sequel continues the brand’s championing of young girls, and asks viewers to keep doing things #LikeAGirl. (Huffington Post)

Ozo, an adorable 3D-printed bear, is introducing children to the Rubik’s Cube. The retro toy stumps even adults, but it turns out the exercise helps develop important mental capabilities. Ozo Bear teaches kids problem solving with body parts that have to be rearranged to put him in the correct shape. The product is still in early development stages, but mass production predicted for Ozo’s future and 3D-printed playthings are an emerging toy trend to watch. (psfk)

Every other week we tap into our panel of 150,000+ young consumers in a survey of 1,000 13-32-year-olds for their take on current events, trending topics, changing attitudes, and new norms. The question library in the My Library tab on allows Silver and Gold subscribers to see what we’ve asked and how we’ve asked it for every monthly survey we've done, giving them a better understanding of how we talk to Millennials and an accessible data bank of all of the Millennial statistics available to them. (Ypulse)

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