What The Wanderlust Generation Wants In A Hotel

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

Airbnb hasn’t dominated the travel industry just yet, but to keep young travelers checking into national chains, hotels need to know what 13-35-year-olds want...

Gen Z and Millennials have a strong case of wanderlust. A huge majority say they are interested in taking trips, and the jet-setting generations have rewritten the rules when it comes to where to go, what to do, when to plan, and how to budget. And while this means that far-flung destinations are in vogue and extreme activities abound, it has also led to the creation of the biggest disrupter in the travel industry—Airbnb. Since its inception, the home-sharing platform has promised to overtake the hotel industry as thrifty and experience-driven Millennials flocked to its unique destinations, and national hotel chains have scrambled to stay relevant. As it turns out, however, Airbnb is third in line when it comes to where 13-35-year-olds prefer to stay when they travel. Ahead of the Millennial-directed home-sharing service are more classic accommodations. The number one place 13-35-year-olds want to stay? National hotel chains.

This may come a surprise to those in the travel industry who have long braced themselves for the day when Airbnb’s beach bungalows and treehouses officially lured Millennials away from high-rise hotels for good. But so far, hotels have held their own. While Airbnb's growth rate has been astronomical, it hasn't yet hurt the bottom line of hotel chains. From 2014 to 2015, the revenue per available room for hotels in the US grew 6%, according to hotel industry research firm STR, and between 2010 and 2015, the price per room jumped $20 to $78.71. A recent survey from Resonance Consultancy also found that 35% of Millennials prefer to stay in upscale or luxury hotels compared to 23% who prefer short-term…


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The Newsfeed

Quote of the Day: “I actively avoid discussions of TV shows.”—Male, 31, MI

Networks are launching an onslaught of new streaming services to compete with the likes of Netflix and Hulu. CBS, Disney, and now Warner Media are hopping on the bandwagon to compete for young cord-cutters' viewing time. The digital switch makes sense, considering 74% of 13-36-year-olds told Ypulse they watch Netflix weekly, versus 33% who watch cable weekly. But one eMarketer analyst predicts this over-saturation in the streaming wars will lead to “a shakeout," in which companies will be weeded out unless they consolidate their offerings. (THR)

Macy’s is putting virtual reality in 90 stores, with the “largest VR rollout in retail history.” Shoppers can don HTC Vive VR headsets to create 3D floor plans, design their living spaces, deck them out with Macy’s furniture, and then take a step inside of the room. The retail tech enables smaller Macy’s stores to offer a lot more inventory to shoppers, and follows in the footsteps of other reality-bending home décor brands. And, according to Macy’s, VR sales were 60% higher than regular sales in their three pilot stores. (MediaPost)

Prada is plotting a comeback among young consumers. They’ve been slow to adapt to digital, but now the luxury company is emphasizing Instagram and aiming to grow their online sales, which were just 5% in early 2018. While investors applaud Prada’s dive into digital, they also believe the brand needs to shutter several stores—not just to increase “profitability” but to create “the illusion of scarcity.” Prada also has to recover from being late to the luxury streetwear game. (Bloomberg)

Some teens are opting for technical school over four-year universities. At Queens Tech, high schoolers are trained to take on non-desk jobs, like being an electrical engineer or working for public transit companies. Earning a high paycheck that isn’t chipped away by student debt is helping to overcome the societal stigma of skipping college. According to one Queens Tech student, “If you’re a construction worker, you may get paid the same as a doctor, but you don’t look as good.” (Vice)

Don't expect to see macho men and swooning women in grooming brands' latest ads. Instead, companies across the industry are toning down the machismo for Millennial & Gen Z males. Some are blurring gender lines, like Dollar Shave Club, whose “Get Ready” spots debunked stereotypes by not just casting straight, cis males. Other brands are betting modern men are more in touch with their emotions, like Gillette, who shared the touching story of a man’s son becoming an NFL linebacker, despite missing one hand.
(Ad Age)

Quote of the Day: “[Zendaya] is such a beautiful human being and I grew up watching her on the Disney Channel.”—Female, 18, TX

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