Young Diners Want Fast Food Restaurants To Know These 5 Things

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

Health-obsessed young diners are still eating fast food, but that doesn’t mean they don’t expect some changes from the segment. Here’s what 13-35-year-olds really want from fast food chains...

It’s no secret that young consumers are health-obsessed. More than previous generations, wellness is an active pursuit for Millennials and Gen Z, who are exercising more, eating better, and spending more of their hard-earned cash on healthy living. They’re using apps to track fitness data, turning to online resources for health advice, and fueling a revolution of organic, all-natural food. In fact, sales of food made or grown without pesticides and hormones increased 8% in 2016 compared to an increase of 0.6% in overall food sales in the U.S., and according to recent Ypulse research, four in 10 13-35-year-olds say they eat only organic and all-natural food. Additionally, six in 10 Millennials and Gen Z say that, overall, they have a healthy diet.

In response to these healthy tendencies, the fast food industry has been understandably anxious. Many predicted that foodie-centric Millennials would turn their backs on the McDonalds and Burger Kings of the world in favor of healthier, trendier fast casual options—as well as in favor of cooking at home. And while it’s true that young consumers say they prefer fast casual (over half of 13-35-year-olds tell Ypulse they would rather eat at Chipotle than McDonalds), the fast food industry has actually fared well among these health-loving generations. Less than one in 10 young diners say they never eat at fast food restaurants, and four in 10 say they eat at them often or even very often. The U.S. fast food industry grew from $206 billion to $209 billion between 2016 and 2017, according to Statista, and it’s expected to grow another 6% by 2020. According…

 
 

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YouTube is cracking down on creators that participate in dangerous viral challenges. The media giant updated their community guidelines to take a stronger stance against stunts that spin out of control—like the Tide Pod Challenge. Any creator that performs “pranks that make victims believe they’re in serious physical danger” will earn a strike—three and they’re out. What could constitute a strike? Just ask Jake Paul, who recently drove blindfolded for the #BirdBoxChallenge. (The Verge)

The inner five-year-old of Millennials everywhere is jumping up and down for Hot Topic’s Polly Pocket collab. In partnership with Mattel, the brand that wins at delivering unique styles is dropping a 17-piece collection of nostalgic merch. (The line looks a lot like another throwback collection we called out last year.) In celebration of the iconic toy’s 30th birthday (feel old yet?), ‘90s kids can cop everything from bags to hats to mini makeup palettes that feature shades like “Made in the 90s.” (Nylon)

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Big brands are swooping in to save young shoppers from 2018’s oat milk shortage. The buzzy beverage has become the environmentally friendly alternative to almond milk for Millennial & Gen Z shoppers seeking dairy-free and vegan options. It became a barista favorite this year, mainly thanks to industry upstart, Oatly, which is opening a new factory to up their production. But they better hurry: big brands like Pepsi Co.’s Quaker Oats, Danone’s Silk, and Califia Farms are all getting in on this grain-based trend. (Bloomberg)

The most old-fashioned form of TV is experiencing a surge: over-the-air. While the Post-TV Gen continue to cut the cord, more are buying physical antennas to tap free networks and watch live events. Nielsen data found that this kind of old-school appointment viewing jumped from 9% of all homes in 2010 to 14% last year. Diving deeper into that 14%, about three in five also subscribe to streaming services like Netflix, and their median age is 36. (Fortune)

Quote of the Day: “I’d rather do a job I'm passionate about for a lower salary than do a high-paying but low-rewarding job.”—Male, 18, MA

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