Scandal in the Age of Acceptance

This Monday, we took a look at how Millennial attitudes are shifting their views on just what can be deemed scandalous in The End Of Scandal As We Know It. We also told you that though they may be changing, scandals will not become extinct and that new issues that matter to Millennials will rise up to take the place of the traditionally taboo public behaviors. For this generation, scandals will be made up of those things that Millennials find socially unpalatable, like corporate discrimination and cover-ups. In this world, there is such a thing as bad PR — because while Millennials are quick to forgive personal missteps and brand product and marketing failures, publicly aired opinions that don’t fit into their worldview are scandal igniters. Here’s a look at some recent scandals that signify the shift:

 

1. A&F’s “Cool Kids” Comments

Abercrombie & Fitch has had a serious branding problem and PR scandal on their hands since comments that CEO Mike Jeffries made that the youth retailer does not produce plus-sized clothing because they “go after the cool kids” were publicized earlier this month. The comments incited a wave of anger and reactions from consumers online and off. Interestingly, the interview in which these comments were made is seven years old, a fact that is significant in a few ways. First, the public perception of what brands are responsible for, how they should act, and the plus-sized clothing acceptance movement has changed significantly in that time. Second, Millennials have aged up and become more economically and culturally influential since 2007. Finally, the internet means that everything a brand puts out into the public can affect their reputation—even if years have past since the gaffe. Millennials, a generation that has been taught that acceptance is the…

 
 
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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “A ‘foodie’ to me is someone who takes pictures of every meal and follows multiple food blogs and pins a lot of food pictures on Pinterest.” –Female, 17, TX

ABC Family wants to be there for young women 14-29-years-old as they “navigate the next step” in their lives. To do so, they’re doubling their original programming with both scripted and reality series in the coming years, and stepping away from “trash-talking, train-wreck reality TV shows” to focus on more aspirational content. To keep up with their socially engaged audience, who spends an average of three hours a day on mobile, they’re launching a revamped Watch ABC Family app this summer. (Adweek)

Online voters could put a transgender Millennial man on the cover of Men’s Health. The magazine’s “Ultimate Guy Search” looks for men that embody their ideals of health and wellness, and thanks to social media and a strong LGBTQ community, 27-year-old trans male Aydian Dowling is the competition frontrunner by a landslide. There are both judges and a “reader’s choice” component to deciding the winner. A 2014 Ypulse monthly survey found that 87% of Dowling’s generation believe that LGBT individuals should be able to live their lives without discrimination and judgment. (The Daily Beast)

Michael Kors seems to have captured the hearts of teen girls: 39% of average-income girls choose Kors as their preferred handbag, up from 7% in 2012, while previously beloved Coach fell from 46% to 17% in that same amount of time. Teen shoppers are a powerful and influential bunch, and they’ve brought Kors “to new highs.” However, when brands become ubiquitous, as Coach did and some think Kors could become soon, sales can slow, making room for “hard-charging upstarts” like Tory Burch and Kate Spade. (Bloomberg)

For some time now YouTubers have been garnering just as much popularity as Hollywood celebrities, and it’s beginning to pay off, big time. According to Outrigger Media, CharlisCraftyKitchen, the largest food and cooking YouTube channel, is bringing in an estimated $127,000 a month. We should mention that CharlisCraftyKitchen stars 8-year-old baker Charli and her 5-year-old sister, Ashlee. Their amateur videos are among the successful channels that are providing marketers with a “tidy revenue stream” as they continue to garner millions of views. (AdAgeBusiness Insider)

Disney is tapping into the next generation’s interest in STEM to promote their upcoming movie Tomorrowland. The Create Tomorrowland – XPRIZE Challenge is asking kids and teens to envision themselves in the future and share what inventions they think would be impactful. Starting next week, creative thinkers between the ages of eight and 17-years-old can submit videos, images, or stories about their imagined invention or innovation and the influence it could have. Six winners will receive prizes to help move their ideas forward in real life, like a mentorship with a leader in their area of interest and a 3D Printer. (XPRIZE Challenge)

If you haven’t already noticed, Millennials care about their food. 47% consider themselves “foodies,” and 89% say that they’re open to trying new foods. How do we know? It’s not telepathy. Every other week, we reach out to our Millennial panel of over 60,000, asking 1,000 13-32-year-olds about current events, seasonal trends, changing attitudes, and new norms. The results of these monthly survey results are delivered to our Gold subscribers, and can be downloaded from our site. (Ypulse)

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