Young Consumers Are Donating To Causes—Here’s How

Young consumers are known for their passion to do good—so why have some non-profits struggled to reach this group? We asked 13-36-year-olds how they give back and what motivated them to do so…

Gen Z and Millennials haven’t taken a passive stance when it comes to making the world a better place. According to our YPulse survey on causes and activism, around five in six 13-36-year-olds tell us they hope to get involved in social good/charity work and 83% are empowered enough to believe they make a difference by getting involved. From youth-organized marches to online activism movements, these young generations continue to show that they will rally behind the causes that matter to them. And yet, some iconic nonprofits are struggling attracting cash and commitment from these young consumers. Case in point: The American Red Cross ran an operating deficit after its worst fundraising year in over a decade in 2015, according to Adweek. So, what’s the missing link?

Firstly, it’s important for charitable organizations to note that young generations are showing their support in ways that haven’t been seen before. Teens, for example, are limited by their financial abilities and are most often showing their support of social causes through social media—and we know now that sharing hashtags holds potentially tremendous power. Millennials, on the other hand, wield their financial and political power more actively, choosing to vote, boycotting brands that do not align with their beliefs, and making donations to show their support. In fact, the majority (59%) of 18-36-year-olds donated money to a charitable organization within the last year and it’s clear by their motivations that convenience played a factor. Online was the top way Millennials donated in the last year and the top reason was that an…


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The Newsfeed

Quote of the Day: “The [financial] industry has been slow to adapt to the ways in which young people want to be communicated with and to communicate with each other.”—Ian Rosen, CEO, StockTwits (YPulse)

Instagram users can now purchase products without leaving the app. The platform’s shopping tags are evolving to allow users to check out directly inside the app from about 20 retailers using saved payment and shipping information. The move doesn’t just give Facebook a direct cut of each sale, but also allows the platform to collect data that they’ll leverage in their ad targeting. Instagram’s influence over young consumers’ purchases continues to skyrocket, and according to our Shoppability trend, 72% of Gen Z & Millennials are open to buying products on social media. (Recode)

Disney and MAC Cosmetics are debuting a nostalgic makeup line for Aladdin fans. The Disney Aladdin collection features lipstick, an eyeshadow palette, and bronzer in jewel and metallic hues that Princess Jasmine might wear with her bright turquoise outfit. The partnership is part of the lead-up to the live-action Aladdin’s debut, and isn’t MAC’s first time introducing fans to whole new worlds of Disney-themed cosmetics. In the past, they’ve also released Cinderella and Disney villains-themed lines. (Teen Vogue)

Google announced their ambitious plan to become “the future of gaming:” a cloud-based streaming service called Stadia. Gamers will be able to play across device (phones, TVs, tablets, etc.) without waiting for the title to load in a YouTube-connected setting. That means viewers can instantly play titles featured in videos and stream their own gameplay to YouTube—which could challenge industry leader, Amazon-owned Twitch. The Netflix-like service is set to launch this year. (The Verge)

Instagrammable dim sum is going global. The craze stared in Hong Kong, where Social Places serves up bao made to look like tiny pigs and charcoal custard bao filled with “a thick liquid that oozes out like lava,” introducing three or four new incarnations each month to keep customers coming back. Meanwhile at Disneyland Hong Kong, Crystal Lotus customers dine on buns that look like their favorite animated characters, including Frozen's Olaf. In the U.S., San Francisco’s Chili House and New York’s RedFarm are some of the first to take on the trend. (Bloomberg)

Netflix’s next choose-your-own-adventure series lets viewers chart Bear Grylls’ journey through the wilderness. Soon, Netflix viewers will have the chance to become outdoors experts from the comfort of their couches, as they make the survival show celebrity’s choices as he traverses tricky situations. Grylls himself says that he’s “giving viewers an all-access pass to explore the world and its landscapes in my boots” and that “For the first time, my survival is in your hands.” (THR)

Quote of the Day: “One of the biggest myths about Millennials is that they do not want to engage with human beings, especially if a chatbot, app, or a website can be deployed.”—Xiomara Lorenzo, Director, Society of Grownups (YPulse)

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