Millennials Reveal Who Represents Their Generation

Mark Zuckerberg. Lady Gaga. Justin Bieber. These are among some of the top influencers among Millennials since they’ve induced innovation across society and paved the way for a generation of individuals who seek to make a name for themselves too. We recently surveyed 400 14-34-year-olds asking who they believe defines their generation, and it’s no surprise that some of the most creative, active, and cause-driven stars were the ones they mentioned the most.

Mark Zuckerberg is a top Millennial icon since he has achieved entrepreneurial success, which many young people hope to reach too. He had a great idea that’s shaped society and he brought it to life while still in college. They know his story thanks to “The Social Network” and feel a connection to him since he produced a product that is of huge importance to their generation in particular. Facebook isn’t just a way to communicate with friends; it’s become a lifeline for many young people to stay informed about the world at large. Many Millennnials aspire to create something as powerful as he did and they appreciate that amidst his success, he’s still laid-back, wearing jeans and hoodies to work.

Believe it or not, but Bieber is also someone who they feel represents their generation since he’s led the way in using social media to become a star. Many young people feel responsible for his fame as they found him on YouTube, contributed to his videos going viral, and were part of the inescapable phenomenon that’s become Bieber Fever. To many, he proves that anything is possible and you can use platforms like YouTube and Twitter to create a brand. His story is also very transparent since the public was part of his journey, and his rise to fame was depicted in the movie “Never Say Never.” But most of all, he’s shown that it’s possible…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“I observe holidays and religion-based traditions but am more connected to it as a culture than as a religion.”—Female, 27, MA

Chinese youth have a “selfie obsession” that’s changing beauty standards and creating a new tier of celebrity. The Influencer Effect is full blown in China, where young consumers are beautifying their selfies via filter apps like Meitu and plastic surgery—all in the quest to look more like wang hong, their internet celebrities. One influencer, HoneyCC, argues that “Selfies are part of Chinese culture now, and so is Meitu-editing selfies.” But some say the trend is pushing the population to become more homogenous by favoring certain features, and headlines have lashed back against the whitening of skin prevalent in social apps. (The New Yorker)

Eighty-one percent of Bustle, Romper, and Elite Daily’s Millennial readers say social media is the best way for advertisers to reach them. Bustle’s latest questionnaire also found that 40% of their 18-34-year-old readers prefer Instagram for brand communications, followed by trusted websites, email, and online articles. Some other fun insights: Over half believe that a company should give back, instead of just turning a profit, and 49% think “companies should do more to protect the environment.” (Adweek)

Drug use is down among teens—except when it comes to marijuana and vaping. From the 1990s to 2017, the percentage of teens who said they’d been drunk dropped from 46% and 58%, and those reporting they’ve smoked cigarettes from 26% and 17%. However, marijuana use increased for the first time in seven years in 2017, while vaping is up as well, with at least 19% of high school seniors, 16% of sophomores, and 8% of eighth-graders saying they’ve vaped in the past year. (LATimes)

Two modern dating shows are coming to Facebook Watch. The first “unscripted dating show” from SoulPancake, Love & Longitude, is shot on iPhones and shows two potential love interests’ relationship blossoming across FaceTime, social media, and other digital interactions. The second dating show from Machinima, Co-Op Connection, plays into the esports craze. One bachelor gets to pick his partner based on their personality—and their skills at the videogame, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds. (tubefiltertubefilter)

Some cities are past their “peak Millennial” populations, as the generation increasingly finds new digs in the suburbs. Boston, Chicago, and Los Angeles all reached their highest Millennial population in 2015, and New York and Washington D.C. are showing slowing Millennial growth, according to U.S. Census data. Meanwhile Chicago’s suburbs and others have seen an uptick in their young adult populations—another Millennial myth debunked. Which urban centers are still attracting the demo as they age up? “Tech hubs” like Seattle and San Francisco. (Time)

“Crochet and knitting are very relaxing, therapeutic, and have tangible results."—Female, 31, AL

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