Why Going Mobile Means Being Human

“Going mobile” has been on the tip of companies’ tongues in the past year. Yahoo has more than hinted at this strategy when they revealed their Q4 report in January and recently, a total site overhall, with a more personalized and dynamic interface, amped-up visuals and infinite scrolling capabilities, suggests a more mobile-friendly strategy

Last week, in an attempt to gain back their Millennial following, Facebook also introduced a redesigned News Feed that it called “mobile inspired,” setting a goal for 2013 to “create some mobile experiences that simply can’t be done on the desktop.”  And at this year’s SXSW, the spotlight is shifting from software to devices.  This Mobile Insider article reports from on-the-ground at SXSW stating that companies are also discussing "authenticity" as a top priority, especially when you consider that Millennials' falsehood meter is one of their greatest assets. It states: "The connected generation are the ones who have changed the game for all aspects of advertising and marketing." Building a second screen experience along with personalization, intimacy and being "human" have become necessities among social media, mobile and marketing strategies. 

We focused on this trend in January, delving into why a mobile strategy has become table stakes for companies aiming to engage Millennials and the post-millennial generation (who truly are 'digital natives'). To put this digital dependency into perspective, we surveyed 990 13-34-year-olds about how much they value their cellphone. Two-thirds said they’d be lost without their phone and more than half (54%) feel that their cellphone is a lifeline to the world around them. Millennials want to know what their network of “friends” is doing at any hour as well as to always have information at hand –…

 
 

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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “YouTube is an ocean of entertainment. No other app can provide as much entertainment as YouTube.” –Male, 18, NY

As Millennials’ spending power begins to outpace Boomers’, what are they buying more than any other generation? The answers might surprise you. A list of ten things that young consumers are buying more often include gas station food and snakes (?!). But the rest of the list is less shocking: they’re also buying more craft beer, piercings and tattoos, same day delivery, and, of course, hot sauce. (Time)

Facebook has been upping their video game as the online content wars have heated up, and it seems to be paying off.  The social network’s recent earnings report shows a significant increase, brought on by their video growth. The report says that “billions” of videos are watched on the platform each day, and that 75% of those are on mobile. Facebook Pages (for celebrities, businesses, etc.) have reportedly been sharing 40% more video since the beginning of this year alone. (Streamdaily)

In a recent New York Times article examining campus suicide, Cornell’s director of counseling cited the pressure to look perfect on social media as an amplifier of the problem, “since students feel compelled to post smiling selfies even when they’re struggling." One female student tells New York Magazine, “When I posted [this photo], I subconsciously hoped that if I could convince others I was happy, then maybe I could believe it myself.” (NYMag)

We know Millennial men want to be hands-on dads, but some might be finding fatherhood a more difficult balance than they had planned. Researchers say that their struggles could be because workplace policies have “not caught up to changing expectations at home,” and Millennials’ more egalitarian views on parenthood. One survey found that 24% of Millennial men who had not had children expected to shoulder most of the child care responsibilities, while only 8% of those with children actually did. (NYTimes)

Though young consumers are certainly shopping from their phones, our list of their top ten favorite apps did not include any from the retail category—hinting at an opportunity for retailers to step up their mobile game. Online-only store Everlane has created an app to “cater to their biggest fans” with suggestions on what to wear based on the daily weather, and early exclusive access to items on the app only. (TechCrunch)

Quote of the Day: “Pandora is my favorite app because I LOVE music and creating stations that introduce me to new songs I didn't know about.” –Female, 31, GA

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