3 Millennial Myths Debunked

We hear a lot about Millennials during our daily research, and as we’ve said before, there are a lot of misconceptions and myths out there. From labeling them as slacktivists (not necessarily true) to saying they’re the worst generation in the workplace, there are many stories about Millennials that just don’t hold up when you look a little deeper. Here are three common myths about Millennials that just may not be true:

Myth #1: Hookup Culture Killed Dating! 
Hookup culture is a favorite topic of a certain segment of those writing about Millennials. The common story goes: Millennials (especially those in college) are eschewing relationships to instead hookup with everyone they can, and dating is dead because of the rise of hookups, leaving a generation devoid of intimacy and real relationships. But not so fast! New research has found that hookup culture is probably a myth, and Millennials aren’t having any more sex with more partners than previous generations. (Information which Millennials themselves are probably not surprised to hear.) While Millennials might have different expectations about and definitions of long term relationships in their 20s, their actual behavior doesn’t match up with the “great hookup culture scare” of the past few years.

Myth #2: Young People Can’t Stop Sexting on Snapchat! 
The sexting myth goes hand in hand with the hookup myth, and makes us wonder if older generations just like to think that younger ones are sex-crazed because it’s fun to talk about. Thanks to some well-publicized teen sexting scandals, the conversation around young people and sexting has been one of fear and shock. While we're not downplaying the experiences of some teen sexters as real and sometimes damaging, the phenomena is not exactly what it's often perceived to be. The…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“As a graphic designer, without the arts being available to me in school I would have been lost as a child and where to take my career path. The fact that schools are cutting art programs is heartbreaking.”—Female, 24, NJ

Applebee’s is putting down the sriracha and giving up on trying to appeal to Millennials. The brand has decided their newer menu items—like a “triple pork bonanza” sandwich—and attempt at a “modern bar and grill” reinvention has “alienate[d]” Boomers and Gen Xers. They’re shutting down more than 130 restaurants and bringing back initiatives from before their attempted “pendulum swing towards millennials,” all-you-can-eat specials and 2-for-$20 deals. Other brands are creating new spin off chains to appeal to fast-casual lovingMillennials, that “[lack] the associated baggage of the old.” (Inc, NPR)

Adults-only ball pits, bouncy houses, and giant slides are sweeping the U.K. Millennials seeking a break from adulthood are flocking to places like Wacky World’s “massive bouncy-castle obstacle course,” which started out as a children’s event. The founder received so many requests that now every event has an 18-and-over slot, and has expanded to 19 cities. This “trend for arrested development activities” is caused by nostalgia, but the influx of marketing and branding leveraging the emotion could be popularizing these playgrounds for adults. (The Guardian)

Facebook is responding to the trend of asking for birthday charitable donations by integrating it right into the platform. Users in the U.S. can now trade in all the “HBD”s they get on Facebook for donations to the cause of their choice: well-wishers will be notified of the birthday along with the selected non-profit, and get the chance to donate. Facebook will ask users which charity they wish to dedicate their day to two weeks in advance, allowing them to choose from 750,000 organizations. (TNW)

Appear Here is the Airbnb of pop-up shops, giving brands their perfect temporary store for the new era of retail. The company finds short term retail space, and has worked with big-name brands like Nike and Net-a-Porter to open “experimental activations” or “test new products.” As brick-and-mortar continues to suffer and long-term stores close, Appear Here says physical retail is still needed, but to “tell a story.” The pop-up industry was valued at $50 billion in 2015, and provides a more low-risk, flexible option to avoid the retail wasteland. (Glossy)

Millennials & Gen Z are turning a profit online and on mobile by re-selling their retail. Thredup, Poshmark, and Depop are just a few of the most popular brands cashing in on the resale economy’s $18 billion market, and some shoppers say they are making $300 a week on the platforms. Some are also using social to sell, often in conjunction with apps or sites, including Snapchat, Facebook Groups, and Instagram. College students on a budget are reportedly especially drawn to resale, thanks to convenience, value, and access to luxury at a lower price. (FN)

“Adult means being entirely independent. I pay my own bills, make all decisions in my life, and feel very in control.”—Male, 20, NY

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