End Of The Season Recap:  Back-To-School Shopping

BTSStores are already stocking up for the holiday shopping season, but before moving on to the next event on marketers’ minds, we decided to examine the back-to-school shopping season as a whole. We surveyed 402 Millennials as part of a post-BTS analysis, and gained insights about their purchasing habits, shopping influences, and some of the biggest trends they’ve noticed at school.

First, it’s important to know that Millennials are independent when it comes to shopping for BTS clothes, and they’re making most of the decisions about what to buy. Even those who went shopping with parents or other family members still made most of the decisions since they’re the ones wearing the clothes. On average, Millennials said 58% of their BTS shopping was done by themselves whereas a quarter of it was with family members and 17% of it was with friends. Moreover, 6 in 10 (61%) said they made all the BTS clothing shopping decisions and a quarter made most of the decisions. Overall, nearly half said they were personally responsible for all of their shopping, whereas 22% said they did most of it. This proves just how essential it is to reach Millennials directly since they’re deciding what stores to go to and what to buy.

In terms of timing, Millennials are hitting the stores later and later each year. While BTS inventory is out earlier and stores are attempting to lure in consumers with coupons and deals in the beginning of July, most Millennials aren’t focused on BTS shopping until August. Half said they began shopping for their BTS wardrobe at the same time as last year, yet 3 in 10 (28%) started shopping later this year. Those who shopped at the same time as last year reported that it’s convenient and August is the core part of the BTS shopping season. Others added that they wanted to get most of…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“I don't spend money, really on anything. I enjoy video games and will enjoy getting video games, but I receive as gifts from grandparents, parents”—Female, 14, IA

Airbnb is booming in Africa, where young travelers are “looking for culture rather than comfort.” Over two million people have used Airbnb in Africa to book vacation accommodations in the last five years, reportedly earning African hosts $139 million in just the past year. Wanderlusting Millennials are pushing themselves out of their comfort zones to discover new places, rather than retread old ground, and locales like Africa are getting a boost because of it. (Quartz)

Nielsen says they finally have a way to measure Netflix viewership—but Netflix says they’re way off base. Nielsen claims they can keep track of all viewing on the platform, including originals, “whether or not a studio or network wants them to.” Netflix claims, “The data that Nielsen is reporting is not accurate, not even close, and does not reflect the viewing of these shows on Netflix.” Ouch. Regardless, Nielsen’s move is a step in the right direction to measure what The Post-TV Genis watching, and has “direct implications for the ad business.” (MediaPostAdAgeFortune)

Influencers are using Instagram’s new polling feature, beating brands to the punch. Influencer network Blog Lovin’ found that 66% of their followers (many of which are influencers) had already used polling, while 87% plan to in the future. Polling is not only an opportunity to engage with customers but a way for brands to “[ask] for feedback about products, creat[e] engagement around topics that are in the media and [conduct] market research.” But brands have been slow to ask influencers to use the new story feature for promotions or to utilize the feature on their standalone accounts. (Glossy)

High school students are increasingly taking college courses—but little is known about whether it will benefit them. Thanks to dual-enrollment programs, which are expanding rapidly, students can get a head start on college credits, cutting down on the cost of higher education. Some also argue that Advanced Placement courses are more rigorous, and worthier of students’ extra effort. However, the impacts of programs on “a diverse set of students” is not yet known. (WSJ)

Kids have online influencers too, and they’re pushing branded toys to devoted viewers. Unboxing videos on YouTube are not a new phenomenon, but kid stars unboxing toys are getting brands’ attention as a way to leverage The Influencer Effect. MGA Entertainment, the world’s largest private toy company, pivoted 90% of their ad spend to digital in 2014 and report the strategy is paying off. Studies show children’s attention is switching from cable to YouTube, and influencers help brands reach a “much more engaged smaller audience” and give them “that potential for virality.” (Bloomberg)

"I love coffee and love the experience of having someone make me a nice latte. I like being around other people and hanging out in restaurants or cafes.”—Female, 20, PA

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