Questions With A 23-Year-Old: Bryan Spencer

Want to know what's on Millennials' minds? We chat with them in our frequent feature "Questions With a Millennial" to provide you with answers and insight. In today's edition, we spoke with Bryan Spencer, a 23-year-old currently living in China.

Questions With a MillennialWhat are 5 things you couldn't live without?
1. iPhone
2. Kindle Fire
3. Credit Card
4. Amazon.com
5. Running shoes (Asics)

How do you typically watch TV? On a set or streaming? Alone or with family or friends? 

I usually stream TV — generally alone, but if a show is popular (“Walking Dead,” “Homeland,” “Game of Thrones,” “Office” … I could go on for a while!) I will watch it with friends on a TV set.

What's your preferred social network and why?

I like Facebook because I can chat with my friends back home. I generally use “WeChat,” an iPhone app that connects to the Chinese social network QQ … it’s cheaper than texting and all my friends here in China use it

About how often do you check your cellphone?

It would probably be easier to say how often I’m not looking at it! I generally just check for messages/emails and don’t surf the Internet on it very often or play games.Bryan 

What's the last thing you watched on YouTube?

The Vice Presidential Debate

How do you typically consume news, if at all?

I consume news online unless I’m taking the train or flying, and in that case, I’ll grab a paper. In terms of websites, I read The Atlantic, Economist, WSJ, CNN, and BBC. I also like news aggregators such as Reddit, and of course I watch “The Daily Show.”

What brand do you think really understands your generation and why?

I may be cheating because this is such an easy answer, but...Apple. People pay a premium for the brand because of Apple’s marketing and influence.
 

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“It[‘s] only about the music for me, nothing else dictates what I listen to, I either like it or I don't.”—Male, 28, WA

A new app is getting teens’ attention as it rises through the ranks of the new social apps to know, even surpassing Houseparty’s popularity—but the catch is it’s “piggyback[ing]” on Snapchat. Polly allows users to create anonymous surveys that they can send on Snapchat (there's that anonymity allure again), meaning many users may not have actually downloaded the Polly app, so they “could slip away if friends stop posting questions.” For now though, the app amassed 20 million users and 100 million answers last month, proving it’s one to keep an eye on. (TechCrunch)

Designers are taking to social media to “shame” the retailers ripping off their work. When Zoila Darton spotted a Forever 21 shirt eerily similar to the one she helped create to benefit Planned Parenthood, she posted a tweet to let the brand know their copycat didn’t go unnoticed—and quickly gained attention from fashion editors and others. This isn’t the first time pieces have been copied by Forever 21, but designers have a hard time taking legal recourse against the powerful company. Instead, social media posts are often their best bet. (NYTimes)

BeautyCon is continuing to take “Sephora and Coachella and smash it into one thing” to appeal to young consumers. At the latest L.A. event, 20,000 beauty fans came to meet their influencer idols and try out the latest makeup trends, surrounded by empowering slogans and messages—true to the brand’s idea that “beauty can be something beyond a concealer culture.” Of course, brands were there “to win over the new generation”—ChapStick Duo offered cotton candy while Rimmel London’s “slayground” gave attendees a chance to set down their makeup and enjoy a jungle gym and swing set.
(The New Yorker)

It turns out saving money might not be cord cutters’ top reason for switching to streaming. Instead, a recent Magid Associates survey found that “the attractions” of SVOD programming (aka their content) is their top reason for making the move, followed by the overall decline of TV-viewing among 18-24-year-olds. Cable companies are trying to reel The Post-TV Gen back in by offering lower-cost cable bundles (so-called “skinny bundles”), but stepping up their shows might be a better first step to reversing the “accelerating” trend of cutting the cord. (TheStreet)

Pokémon is reaching out to a new generation of trainers with its first app for preschool-aged kids. Pokémon Playhouse follows in the wake of the massively successful augmented reality app, Pokémon Go (which was so popular that we put together an entire infographic on it) but won’t be AR-based. Instead, Playhouse will tap into the collectibles trend by featuring favorite characters like Pikachu for kids to collect by completing activities. There will also be puzzles and more in the app’s “interactive park.” (Kidscreen)

“I'm literally listening to music any time it is socially acceptable.”—Female, 28, MN

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