Millennials & Teens Tell Us Their Favorite Celebrities

Who do Millennials and teens name as their favorite celebrity—and why?

In our Q2 Quarterly trend report survey, we took a look at the state of fame today, and asked Millennials and teens 13-32-years-old to tell us who their favorite celebrity is, and why they name that person as their favorite. This is a qualitative look at the question, which was left open-ended. As with any qualitative question, it’s important to keep in mind that the responses will include those that are top of mind, those they see most often, and those that are actually considered their favorite. That being said, the directional list of their top 10 favorite celebs, and their reasons why, can tell us a lot about the kinds of qualities they're attracted to, and who they are paying attention to. Here’s their top ten list culled from their responses:

Taylor Swift’s position at the top is not too much of a surprise considering our recent look at their favorite musicians, but here we get a closer look at the why behind her popularity. Respondents who choose Swift called her a “good role model,” “relatable,” and named both her talent and her morals as reasons they like her. One 30-year-old male (yes, a range of ages and both genders named Swift as a favorite) wrote, “She seems down to earth, she is a good musician, and overall has a nice public image.  She does not have a persona that makes me resent her, but in addition to being very active in the media and social media platforms, she has good music to back up her celebrity status.” The consistent theme of liking Swift because of her positive, relatable image aligns with our forecast that Millennials and teens are looking for positive messaging and personas, but don’t want celebrities that try to appear perfect.

The theme of relatability continued amongst 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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