We asked 13-17-year-olds to tell us the interests that they’re most passionate about right now…
When Ypulse explained how we define Gen Z, and why, we promised that we would continue to research these young consumers—and keep you up to date on all we learn about Generation Z as they age up and their values and characteristics continue to clarify. We already know that their Gen X parents have taught them a practicality from a young age that has helped shift the retail landscape, their prioritization of individuality and uniqueness, and their resistance to traditional labels.
So of course, when we looked into the hobbies and interests of young consumers, we wanted to look at what Gen Z is most passionate about specifically. Last week, we reported Millennials’ biggest passions right now—broke down by males’ passions and females’ passions—and today we’re doing the same for post-Millennials, and comparing the two generations. In our recent Ypulse monthly survey we asked 13-17-year-olds, “What interest are you most passionate about right now?”*—and these are the top 10 passions they mentioned most:
*These were open-end response questions to allow us to capture the full range of interests that 13-17-year-olds are most passionate about. As with any qualitative question, the responses include those that are top of mind and those that are most popular. The list is ordered according to number of responses received, and alphabetically when ties occurred.
What Are Their Biggest Passions Right Now?
- Gaming/Video Games
- Art / Photography
- Books / Reading
Music is the top passion among Gen Z—a finding we’ve seen reflected in other Ypulse research. Teens’ passion for music has been documented across generations—and this groups’ intense music interest has manifested in the success of sites like Musical.ly, and the rise of the label-less music star. Interestingly, we also know that 13-17-year-olds are more likely than Millennials to think they should not have to pay for music—so their passion for music certainly has a different impact than it might have among previous generations.
Sports and food were second and third most-mentioned respectively—but their positions on the list are somewhat different when looking at Gen Z males versus females:
Gen Z males are more likely than females to name sports as a passion—though we think it’s important to note that sports still makes Gen Z females’ top five, tied with fashion. Gaming appears on Gen Z males’ top five but not females’, while art / photography and fashion make females’ top five, but not males’. The differences are not unexpected considering traditional gender profiles—but the fact that common passions outweigh differences perhaps reveals more about the generation.
But what about Gen Z’s passions compared to Millennials’? Comparing the two lists reveals both interesting differences and commonalities:
Music is the top passion named among both Gen Z and Millennials, and food is in both generations’ top three. Overall, the two groups have more passions in common than not. Movies and games appear on Gen Z’s top passion list uniquely, while health / wellness and politics / social inequality / justice appear on Millennials’. But overall, we see that their passions are aligned in many ways—of course, as we’ve mentioned, the way those passions manifest culturally can be completely different between generations.
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