Ypulse Essentials: Google Music, Digital Distraction, Macy's AR Version Of Virginia

GoogleMusicLast night, Google announced that its Music service (is out of beta and open to the world at large. So far, the Web has been unimpressed by the service, claiming it’s just a copy of iTunes with its exclusive tracks and free songs of the week. But TechCrunch points out that while that may seem to be true, so was Gmail a copy of other email services, but it’s been a huge success because of how the product matured. There are a few aspects of Google Music that we think are particularly relevant to young users… It allows bands — any band — to sell its music on its site, so students can even find that obscure band that they discovered at that tiny show on campus. Music discovery is important to young listeners; it’s a point of pride when they know an artist before their friends do. And don’t discount the significant number of young people who have Android-based smartphones — 26% of students per recent Ypulse research, compared to 25% who have iPhones — who will now have access to the Google Music store in the Android Market. And then there’s the price tag for the service: Free!) (The Verge) (HispanicAd)

- More than three quarters of college students (use digital devices while watching TV. We’re not surprised at all with so many tweeting and posting on Facebook — not to mention checking in to media — while watching TV. And of course that proportion will grow even larger as networks and shows encourage viewers to engage with related content online. Speaking of social viewing, Chill.com, known as the Turntable.com for video, has added integrations with Hulu, Vevo, Livestream, and more, allowing users avatars to have social chats about the content they’re watching. The site still has rooms for VJs to spin videos from YouTube and earn points) (MediaPost) (Mashable)

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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “I thought that this past Cyber Monday, ThinkGeek had the best deals.” –Male, 26, IN
The true impact of mobile devices on young minds has not been fully determined, and public belief seems to be split on the influence of technology on kids and family. A new global survey found that, 53% agree that “digital technology and the internet are ruining childhood." However, the degree to which individuals believe this varies significantly by country: while 70% of respondents in India agreed, 75% of those in Japan disagreed with the same statement. At the same time, 52% around the world felt that growing up without access to tech puts children at a disadvantage. (PRNewser)
In Ypulse’s 2015 Prediction Roundup, we told you smart tech was poised to take over our worlds, and according to several creative industry leaders, this could be one of the biggest challenges to brands this year. A round up of expert opinions on what will impact marketing in 2015 also includes the importance of merging digital and experiential marketing that “has the ability to be documented socially,” a continued obsession with celebrities and micro-celebs, and virtual reality (see Vice’s VR Millions March below). The need for brands to be more honest, empathetic, and to take a social stance is a major theme as well. (Fast Company)
Vice News, a Millennial dominated channel, is continuing their untraditional coverage style by introducing virtual reality to their audience. Vice demonstrated what the future of reporting might look like with their virtual reality coverage of the New York Millions March this past December. With Vice’s correspondent Alice Speri navigating the experience for the viewer, the use of a 360-degree camera system immerses viewers right in the action of the event. The Vice VR Millions March report is available to view through the app VRSE, and supports Google Cardboard, a cheap and easy way to watch VR. VR is still fairly new on the scene, but is a ripe opportunity for innovative and compelling storytelling. (TechCrunch)
Young consumers are leading a travel revolution, and it can be difficult for established brands to compete with the comfort, convenience, and authenticity an affordable home-rental Airbnb provides. In an attempt to win back Millennial guests, Marriot is launching Moxy, a microhotel chain that is redefining budget hotels by emphasizing self-service, style, and social. The hotels boast in-house bars, free Wi-Fi, fresh coffee, and rooms designed with Millennials in mind: simple, small, cheaper, and inspired by boutique aesthetics. Outside of the Moxy chain, Marriot is experimenting with other Millennial-friendly features, including TVs that allow guests to stream from their own Netflix, Hulu, and Pandora accounts. (The Washington Post)
“Millennials are projected to become the largest segment of the luxury consumer market by 2018-2020,” so understanding how they view luxury is increasingly important. As Ypulse explored in 2014, Millennials are redefining the luxury market to fit their needs. Luxury now can mean rarity, convenience, or an uncommon event, all separate from that age-old notion of pretense. This generation is more interested in showing off who they are than how much they make, the brand on the labels matter less than the story behind the product, and they’re focusing on purity, authenticity, and sustainability. At the same time, these young spenders are “showing a preference for discovering luxuries in a manner that is far more casual, experimental, and fun.” (Campaign)
Every other week we tap into our panel of 150,000+ Millennials 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 Ypulse.com allows Silver and Gold subscribers to see what we’ve asked and how we’ve asked it for every 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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