Special Report: Inside Millennials’ Mobile Social World

We tracked the mobile activity of 18-25-year-olds to find out exactly what they’re doing on their phones, what platforms they’re spending their time on, for how long, and more…

It should come as no surprise that 63% of Millennials tell us they can’t live without their phones—and 43% agree that they’re addicted to social media. (Those are just the ones willing to admit it.) According to mobile device company B2X, Millennials around the world look at their phones three times more than Boomers on average. But actually understanding what they’re actually doing on their devices is another story. We track their social media use and mobile media consumption, survey them on their mobile and social behavior—but we wanted to get even closer. Last month, we asked a group of 18-25-year-olds to give us access to their smartphones, allowing us to track the apps they’re using and get a real look at their mobile social behavior. With that rich data, we’ve created a Special Report* that gives an in-depth look at Millennials’ social media behaviors—what they’re really using, when, for how long, and more.

*This full Special Report is available to Gold subscribers to download here! They can also access an interactive digital version of these findings to instantly look at the groups and platforms they’re most interested in, all with a few clicks. 

Not a Gold subscriber? Contact us to find out how to access this content. 

Here’s a glimpse at what we discovered: 

We know that young consumers are on their phones all the time, but how much of that time is spent on social media platforms versus other apps and content? It’s a question we’re asked all the time—and now we know. Almost half of 18-25-year-olds’ time on their phones was spent on social apps and sites. We should note that using social apps was…

 
 

Want to talk to us about the article
or dive into a custom study?


The Newsfeed

“My work schedule can be hectic, so I snack on nuts, berries, or other non-deadly foods during any downtime.”

—Male, 32, KY

AwesomenessTV and fashion/beauty brands are coming together to make branded series for Gen Z. In the past, AwesomenessTV has worked with numerous brands to produce original content, including CoverGirl and Kohl’s. Now they’re planning a 24-part docu-series with Hollister called “This is Summer,” following teens’ high school journeys—while they’re clad in shoppable Hollister clothing of course. Our own Chief Content Officer explains that Ypulse has “found Gen Z to be fairly open to watching sponsored entertainment,” with 77% of 13-17-year-olds agreeing, "As long as the story is interesting, I don't mind that it is sponsored." (Glossy)

Fullscreen agrees that Gen Z is the generation that’s most receptive to branded content. Their survey found over half of Gen Z doesn’t mind even undisclosed branded content, and significantly more Gen Z teens than Millennials have engaged with social branded content (viewing photos, liking and sharing content and tagging friends) in the past six months. Influencer marketing wins out with the group, with over half of teens preferring influencer content to pre-roll, sponsored posts, banners, and traditional TV commercials. The sweet spot for advertisers may be branded video, especially when influencers are involved. (TubefilterAdweek)

Graduation spending is expected to reach a record $5.6 billion for the Class of 2017. Over half of the graduation gifts given will be cash, followed by greeting cards, gift cards, apparel, and electronic devices. Another trend for the year is more and more peers giving each other gifts, with a 6% lift year over year. Younger consumers will spend an average of $78.42 ,compared to 45-54-year-olds’ $119.84 and 65-and-over’s $112.34, and while greeting cards are also most popular, they’re also almost twice as likely to gift clothing. (ConsumerAffairs)

Instagram has the “most negative impact on young people’s mental wellbeing,” followed by Snapchat, according to a recent study. The image-centric platforms could “driv[e] feelings of inadequacy and anxiety,” and were rated the most poorly for their impacts on sleep, FOMO, and body image. Out of the top five most popular social media platforms, YouTube was the only one that earned a positive score. The silver lining? Some argue the evaluation is “blaming the medium for the message,” and social media/online communities are also Gen Z and Millennials’ top resource for learning about “mindfulness, meditation, and wellness,” according to Ypulse data. (The Guardian)

Lego is being called the “most powerful brand in the world,” beating out Google, Visa, and Nike. Brand Finance’s latest valuation report shows Lego’s brand value increased 68% over last year, looking at metrics like “familiarity, loyalty, promotion, marketing investment, staff satisfaction and corporate reputation.” At least some of the lift can be attributed to the successful movie franchise (The Lego Movie and The Lego Batman Movie) and its strategic partnership with Star Wars.

(Business Insider)

“I kind of don't like the commercialization of fandom culture…However, creating licensed products is one way a brand could interact.”

—Male, 24, MO

Sign Up Now

Subscribe for premium access to our content, data, and tools.

Already a subscriber? Sign in.

Upgrade Now

Upgrade for full access to the best marketing tools for understanding the next generation.

View our Client Case Studies