How Millennials & Gen Z Like to Watch TV, in 3 Charts

“TV” doesn’t mean what it once did. So what do young consumers even consider watching TV these days—and how do they prefer to do it?

We often call Gen Z and Millennials the Post-TV Gens–not because they’re ditching TV content, in fact, they can’t get enough of it, but because they’re growing up in a time that the definition of “TV” has completely shifted from what it once was. And as the early adopters of new TV, if you will, they’re the ones fueling the changes from traditional to new media. Even the phrase “TV show” doesn’t mean what it once did. Quartz recently asked the question, “Should we keep calling it TV if no one’s watching it on a TV set?” Since most of what we call “TV” is technically viewed via the internet, executives and creators both are re-thinking their vernacular. What words are winning out in the etymological war? Well, linguists think outdated words (like TV) will stick around for a while (we still say, “dialing a phone,” don’t we?) along with words that are generic enough to hold their meaning, like “shows” and “series.” But the Post-TV Gen’s concept of what these words mean may be more broad than those following more traditional definitions.

Traditional metrics are also playing catch up in a post-TV world. According to AdAge, 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.

With all the confusion around preferences and terminology, brands can understandably get lost. So what do young consumers even consider watching…

 
 

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Quote of the Day: “It's free to walk to work and I get some exercise in.”—Female, 26, NY

Niche beauty brands have blurred gender lines at their core—can large cosmetics companies play catch up without seeming “disingenuous”? Milk Makeup and Fluide have built their brands on being inclusive, but larger brands sometimes strike consumers as hopping on the band wagon when they try to do the same—especially since they created so many of the gender norms they’re now rallying against. The best way for them to get in on the trend? Start by making their hiring process more inclusive both “behind the lens” and in front of it. (Fast Company)

Starbucks thinks the “health and wellness” trend is to blame for declining Frappuccino sales. Despite marketing efforts like the Unicorn Frappuccino, syrupy drink sales are down 3% from last year. However, rivals like McDonald’s and Dunkin' Donuts could be stealing sugary beverage sales from the coffee giant, meaning young consumers’ penchant for healthification isn't necessarily the culprit. In fact, McDonalds recently debuted two new frozen drinks that earning praising on Twitter. (NYPFox News)

Apple is getting into kids’ content, teaming up with Sesame Workshop for a slate of original shows. Live-action, animated, and puppet-based series will be included in the programming, but Sesame Street itself is not part of the deal. There are no details yet on where Apple will release the shows, meaning they could either shop them to another platform or debut them on their own streaming platform. Considering that Apple has several original program deals in the works, they could be looking to bulk up their own bid in the streaming wars. (Kidscreen)

Twitter and Tumblr posts are getting a new lease on life—as screenshots on Instagram. While young users of Twitter and Tumblr have declined, Ypulse’s Social Media Trackerfound that over half of 13-35-year-olds use Instagram daily. Instagram is the preferred place to post memes, despite many accounts creating their content elsewhere. Why do they switch platforms to post? Instagram’s Discover tab allows faster browsing than Twitter, while Instagram images are displayed in full rather than being cut off, like they are on Twitter. (The Verge)

Eggo sales are down in between seasons of Stranger Things. Yes, the sci-fi series has that much influence on the frozen waffle’s revenue. One Eggo executive explains that they “quickly leveraged the [resulting] consumer engagement” from the show, and it paid off: sales jumped 14% in the fourth quarter of 2017 and 9.4% for the first four months of 2018. However, fewer people are binging the Gen Z & Millennial favorite these days, so Kellogg’s frozen pancakes, waffles, and French toast sales have slowed to just 1.3% year-over-year. (CNN)

Quote of the Day: “I fell in love with trance music.”—Male, 23, NY

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