The Top 10 Luxury Brands Millennials & Gen Z Most Want To Own

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

We asked Gen Z and Millennial consumers what luxury brands they most want to own, and their answers show what high-end names are still desirable—even in the age of redefined luxury…

Millennials have redefined what luxury means with both their behavior and attitudes toward high end goods—and according to our data, Gen Z is following right in their footsteps. A recent Ypulse monthly survey found that the younger generation is just as likely to say that they do not care about owning luxury brands, and even more likely to agree that luxury brands should make some affordable items so more people could own them. With these groups, it’s no longer about brand names but something more nuanced—70% of 13-35-year-olds say they think luxury is a feeling not a thing. This shift in perspective can be partially credited to these generations’ shifting values. Millennials and Gen Z are drawn to companies whose ethics align with their own, and put their money where their principles are. This has led conscious consumerism to become the latest status symbol; now, caring about what’s in your food or where your clothing comes from is not only cool, it’s luxe.

Besides general disinterest in conspicuous consumption, however, another major reason for the indifference to luxury is money. Of those who have never purchased a luxury product, 57% of 13-35-year-olds say it’s because they can’t afford it, 50% say they’re saving their money, and 48% say they’d rather spend their money on other things. This has led to a shift in strategy among luxury brands, who are trying to capture the youth market as the oldest Millennials enter their peak earning years come 2020. With the definition of luxury more broad than ever before, and exclusivity no longer a defining marker of luxury brands, competition to be a desired…

 
 

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Quote of the Day: “Time I could be sleeping is time I spend on social media. It's now part of my waking up and going to sleep routine and, for those reasons, I'm feeling done with social media."—Male, 24, CA

MasterCard created an audio-only logo for Generation Voice Activated. The finance brand has debuted a sound they’ll play when people check out using their MasterCard. YPulse data shows that 29% of 18-36-year-olds own a smart speaker device, and that number is only expected to grow along with the use of other audio-activated devices. MasterCard wants to make their brand memorable without visual cues to tap into the $40 billion in revenue voice shopping is expected to generate by 2022. (Fast Company)

Brands are acting uncannily human on Twitter—is it working? Many brands (mainly the food and beverage kind) are “behav[ing] like real people with idiosyncratic personalities” on social media to connect with young consumers. This allows them to “stand out it in a crowded marketplace," explains one marketing professor. And Twitter users are engaging: from Sunny D to Steak-umm, brands are going viral for nihilist, and even depressing, first-person posts. (Vice)

Millennials are buying more greeting cards this Valentine’s Day. The National Retail Federation estimates the industry made as much as $933 million yesterday, compared to $894 million last year. Experts say that Millennials are behind the boost as they buy more expensive, albeit fewer, cards that often have personalized flourishes and functions (like audio). They’re also opting for IRL cards over e-cards because, as one enthusiast explains, "I like giving cards because you can hold it, unlike a text or email.” (NPR)

Brands went beyond romantic messaging for Valentine’s Day this year. Some catered to Millennials’ Treat Yo’Self mentality with collaborations like Tinder and Homesick’s “Single, Not Sorry” candle, while others celebrated Galentine’s Day. Target stocked themed decorations for those hosting girls-only get-togethers and Kay Jewelers set aside a site category for Galentine’s Day gifts. Finally, the NRF estimates that pet owners spent $886 million on their furry friends on Valentine’s Day, and retailers like PetSmart advertised accordingly. (ContentStandard)

More college grads are taking on retail jobs as stores up the ante for new hires. Yes, the trend is fueled by student debt and other financial factors, but also because stores that focus on experience expect more than ever from their customer service reps. Workers at Sweaty Betty, Everlane, and Warby Parker are reportedly trained with workshops, tests, and homework. But while, as one expert explains, “Customers are also coming in with much higher expectations of what level of service they’re going to receive,” retail wages aren’t keeping pace. (Refinery29)

Quote of the Day: “The best thing about social media is to connect with people across geographical boundaries and cultures. I love interacting with people that I wouldn’t have otherwise.”—Female, 22, PA

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