Why Justin Timberlake Should Be Your Millennial Marketing Consultant

Just like the teenager who grows into themselves, realizing their likes, dislikes and personal form of expression – especially while experimenting in college – so too, did Justin Timberlake. The Millennial generation came of age alongside Justin Timberlake, after 2001 saw N Sync’s “Pop” become the bubble gum hit sensation that high schoolers couldn’t resist. With a few junior albums along the way, Justin Timberlake has officially released his most mature self; all grown up and ready to reinvent business models. Continuing to mirror the Millennial generation who has become hyper aware of their digital self, so has Justin Timberlake. He has embraced every social platform for his brand as he possibly can, and not just through the usual channels but through his signature gaming that has enabled him to become a cultural icon.

Last week, we reported that Justin Timberlake was back in the game with his new album 20/20. Instead of releasing it to iTunes right away, or mysteriously having it “illegally leaked online”, JT has embraced the best of both worlds by releasing the entire album for free on iTunes and Spotify one week before its official album release date (oddly enough, legend David Bowie did just the same a few weeks ago).  He was also featured on SNL last weekend, as an official addition to the “Five-Timers Club” honoring his past appearances, which have infiltrated Millennial pop culture humor. The SNL episode gave them the top-rated episode in 14 months; another angle to JT’s business-strategy savvyness. 

20/20 is the most mature of any album we’ve seen from Timberlake. With the launch of his first single from the album, Suit & Tie, Justin Timberlake is bringing the clearly-needed suave man back in an era of “geek chic”, beards (see IFC’s Whisker Wars) hooded sweatshirts…

 
 
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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “If a photo of me went viral, I would feel angry but…maybe I would be a little excited because it went viral, as long as the picture is not bad.” –Female, 16, TN

57% of Millennials ages 18-32 say they plan to get a new job within the next year, according to one of Ypulse’s bi-weekly Millennial surveys, fielded this June. The generation is known for their predilection for moving from job to job, and now some businesses are making “generational training” a part of their management instruction in order to keep these younger workers happy. Giving them a purpose, plenty of time off, global opportunities, and a clear career path plan within the company are all tactics being used to retain them. (Businessweek)

Back to school marketing is starting in full force, and Target is relying heavily on digital to reach college students, in more ways than one. The retailer has launched a campaign employing major YouTube stars, like Tiffany Garcia and Mikey Bolts, to sell apparel, electronics, and furnishings, featuring them in four YouTube shows that make over dorm rooms and offer decorating tips. The video series lives online so that Target can “be part of the ongoing conversation” and “go where the [M]illennial generation is.” (NYTimes)

Millennial-hate is easy to find online, where articles like “Millennials, the Friendly Cutthrout Generation” and “Millennials' Political Views Don't Make Any Sense” seem to appear on a daily basis. But how do Millennials themselves feel about the bad rap they’re getting? One Millennial’s response to some recent Millennial surveys puts things into perspective, wondering if the generation is just more likely to admit things, and whether they “are just like...everybody else?” (Gothamist)

Beyoncé is no stranger to celebrity endorsement, but her latest unexpected marketing trick goes outside the box. This weekend, the powerhouse artist teased a new 50 Shades of Grey trailer by posting a 15-second clip of it on her Instagram with a “darker remix” of her "Crazy in Love" playing as a soundtrack. The teaser was posted with the hashtag #fiftyshades, attracting the attention of both the singer’s fans and the book series’ avid fandom. (MTV)

Rosetta Stone’s new campaign is aimed at Millennials, shifting focus from the product itself to the idea that “people who learn new languages are able to share experiences with people from other places.” The ads will run on more youth-focused channels than Rosetta has appeared on before, like MTV, VH1, and Comedy Central, but the majority of the campaign will be heavily digital and social, and include online webisodes that will air on Vice. (MediaPost)

Did you know that Ypulse tracks social media trends in our biweekly surveys? We found that Vine, Twitter, and YouTube have seen steady growth since November 2013, gaining 7%, 11%, and 12% more Millennial users, respectively. Our Silver and Gold tier subscribers can find helpful visuals that detail our tracked trends in the Data Room on Ypulse.com. (Ypulse)

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