Social Viewing: 5 Apps Making Watching Videos a Group Activity

Millennial research, Millennial insight, Millennial marketing, Gen Z research, Gen Z marketing, Gen Z insight, youth research, youth marketing

Can watching content online be a social experience? These five apps are working on it, and turning solo viewing into a party…

When we researched the current state of entertainment viewing in our Post-TV Gen trend, we found that 13-34-year-olds report watching almost 22 hours of content across all platforms and services weekly. That’s almost an entire day out of their week that they estimate they spend watching videos, TV shows, and movies. Among Gen Z, the estimate was even higher—23.4 hours per week. Often, young consumers’ disruptive entertainment habits are described in misleading ways—they’re “abandoning cable,” or “leaving TV behind”—but they’re not watching less content, they’re consuming more, watching on-the-go, in bed on their laptops, tablets, and phones, on car rides…anywhere their phones are going with them, which is everywhere.

So they’re hungry for content. But what the mobilization of entertainment has done is make much of that entertainment more solo-consumption. Gathering around a phone to watch a video can be done, but it’s not as natural as sitting around the TV screen together. Instead, watching videos and series is increasingly becoming an individual activity—but a new slew of apps is looking to change that. The idea of the social/shared/co-viewing of videos online is taking hold, with major players and startups launching new ways to turn solo-video viewing into a group experience. Here are five apps taking on social viewing, and telling young consumers to "watch together":

Millennial research, Millennial insight, Millennial marketing, Gen Z research, Gen Z marketing, Gen Z insight, youth research, youth marketingTumblr Cabana

This week, Tumblr launched Cabana, a new app to allow users to “hang out and watch stuff” digitally. The app is a combination of group video chat and video viewing: six friends can video chat simultaneously, and watch videos together at the same time. Users can create “rooms”…

 
 

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Quote of the Day: “I don't drink on a typical night, but my choice when I do have a drink is often red wine.”

—Female, 34, FL

13 Reasons Why, the Netflix series about a teen girl’s suicide, has some mental health professionals worried. While some applaud the show for increasing awareness about teen suicide, others fear the series could act as suicide contagion, increasing the risk of an individual engaging in copycat behavior. School districts across the U.S. are sending letters to parents to discuss the show and red flags to watch for in teens’ behavior, while counsellors are having conversations with students and patients. The National Association of School Psychologists has recommended that at-risk youth shouldn’t watch the series, and cautions adults to help teens differentiate “between a TV drama and real life.” (CNN)

U.K. Millennials consider themselves ‘grown up’ at age 27, according to a recent survey by Nationwide Current Accounts. With shifting paradigms surrounding adulthood, Millennials are defining maturity differently, and over half surveyed feel like entrance to adulthood depends on particular milestones rather than age. One in five believe they’re mature when they have children and another one in five when they move out of their parent’s home. Interestingly, Ypulse’s Adulting trend found that paying their own bills is the top sign of adulthood for Millennials in the U.S. (Telegraph)

Millennial shoppers are re-defining retail by purchasing on mobile, returning at higher rates, and ‘showrooming’—selecting clothes in-store then purchasing online—as a part of their “normal” purchasing process.  According to Criteo, as more clothing is purchased online, retailers can expect larger cart sizes at checkout, and return rates as high as 30-50%—which could create an opportunity to get young shoppers back into stores. Successful retailers are ““moving seamlessly between” online and off by covering return shipping costs or allowing in-store returns, innovating their online experiences, and keeping a high volume of product available in both spaces. (MediaPost)

Mexican wine country is becoming a top travel destination for Millennials. Cheaper, artsier, and arguably more authentic than Napa or Sonoma, Valle de Guadelupe is quickly accruing acclaim with twenty and thirtysomethings, who Ypulse has found love their wine. The small strip of vineyards and restaurants is shifting to suit their needs with food trucks, modern art, and even Uber for wine tours, when just a decade ago, the area didn’t even have the necessary roads to facilitate tourism. One winery owner observes, “What used to happen in this part of the world was that no one had anything to do and now everyone has appointments every hour.” (NYTimes)

The restaurant industry currently employs one third of all working teenagers, thanks to a recent uptick in teen employment. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, teens made up 35% of all restaurant workers in 2016, the highest percentage since 2009. Teen participation in the restaurant industry was above 50% until the Great Recession when it started a steep downward trend, causing staffing challenges across the industry. But it’s too early to know if the recent boost in employment signals a new trend or is just “a temporary blip.” (National Restaurant Association)

Quote of the Day: “If a brand is going to interact with a 'fandom' of any sort, they’d better either A) Know what they're talking about and have someone lead the interactions who is a fan as well, or B) Be honest in a funny way…”

—Female, 21, Virginia

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