Ypulse Essentials: A Hunger Games Game, Google+ Is Still Growing, Millennial Women Want & Give Shopping Advice

Hunger GamesGet ready for Hunger Games the, uh, game… (Lionsgate is teaming up with Funtactix to build a social game that takes place in the world of Panem. Debuting the same day as the movie, it will give us the first official map of the futuristic country, which plenty of fans have been trying to divine on their own. In other games news, an Angry Birds K’nex building set — complete with favorite characters and buildable launchers — seems like a brilliant product extension) (Examiner) (Google) (Kidscreen)

- The Super Bowl isn’t just the ultimate sporting event, it’s the ultimate advertising (competition! This year, Google’s businesses are helping us experience it to the max with a YouTube channel created just for the occasion called Ad Blitz 2012 — blitz! get it? — and a Google+ hangout the following day to discuss all this hits and misses. Speaking of Google+, the site has reportedly just hit 100 million users) (Pocket Lint) (Mashable)

- Millennial women are social shoppers (broadcasting their opinions to help friends, family, and perfect strangers make smarter purchase decisions. They also take others’ advice, buying items they’ve heard about via social media and asking their social media friends about what to buy) (eMarketer)

- While the TV industry is struggling with young viewers, some cable companies get Millennials (and what matters to them — justice, authenticity, and connection & community — and focus network decisions based on those principles. Speaking of making moves that would excite a Millennial audience, Viacom might be willing to unbundle its cable channels, including MTV, for a la carte consumption. Such a move might stem the tide of cord cutting among Millennials who don’t see a value in paying a huge cable bill when they don’t watch most of the channels)…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“I move around every few years so it would be a huge hassle to have to buy and sell property so frequently.”—Female, 28, IN

Gen Z will spend the most on rent of any generation, but Millennials aren’t far behind. HotPads estimates that 2-20-year-olds will spend $226,000 on rent before they buy a home and 24-38-year-olds will ring in at $202,000. Despite the difference, Gen Z will own their first home one year earlier than Millennials because they’ll have “a stronger job market than [M]illennials”—but, despite the myths, they are buying homes in greater numbers. PS: Los Angeles tops the list of where young demos will spend the most on rent. (Business Insider)

What’s behind board games' popularity today? The NPD Group found that board games grew 8% compared to the toy industry’s overall growth of 8% in the past year and has “no signs of slowing down.” Digital detoxing plays a part, as more Millennial parents worry about their kids’ screen time and seek toys that foster face-to-face relationships. But despite the analog appeal, games are also getting high-tech and the word-of-mouth media they receive propels social media-friendly games like Pie Face to the top of toy charts. (Kidscreen)

Parents still have the most influence over kids today, but online celebrities are also top role models. Mintel research found that 86% of 6-17-year-olds say their parents are among their top role models, 62% say teachers, and 41% say siblings. But the top kind of celebrity that gets added to the category are social media celebrities at 35%, followed closely by musicians and athletes. Only 22% said actors were among their top role models and just 16% said the President. (MediaPost)

Disney has a new beverage to fill your Instagram feed: The Purple Wall Slushie. The Millennial & Gen Z-loved company has had no problem coming up with social media-friendly items, from Baby Groot bread to a viral Beauty and the Beast-inspired tumbler, and now they’ve rolled out a boba and taro beverage at Disney World. The Purple Wall is a famous destination to snap a pic for social media in the Magic Kingdom, and this slushy is made specifically to match up with the wall (and monetize on it). (POPSUGARInsider)

Speaking of Instagrammability, the Space Needle’s new, clear benches are sure to make for a thrilling photo op. The iconic viewing deck for the Seattle skyline has been in the midst of a makeover to create a better (and decidedly more social media-worthy) viewing experience. A metal base and caging has been replaced with a high glass wall from floor to sky, and so-called “skyrisers” will let visitors sit right on the edge of it all—and snap a selfie. (Curbed)

“People have been planning outfits since the start of the year [for prom].”—Male, 15, NC

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