Ypulse Essentials: Blockbuster's Movie Pass, More Nickelodeon Nostalgia, Books On-Demand

Blockbuster is back and ready to battle Netflix and Qwikster (with Blockbuster Movie Pass, a service that lets users stream content and rent movies and games-by-mail. Unlike Netflix which has split into two companies, the Blockbuster Movie Pass will allow viewers to watch content on both mediums through one subscription and for the same price as Netflix. Sounds appealing, especially to Millennials who are likely to want both options without paying two fees. However, we sense a fight as big as Facebook vs Google+ brewing) (TechCrunch)

- In another attempt to cater to nostalgic Millennials (Nickelodeon and retailer Johnny Cupcakes are selling an exclusive line of t-shirts featuring some of Gen Y’s favorite cartoon characters including SpongeBob Squarepants, CatDog, Rugrats, and Ren & Stimpy. We’re not sure if the clothing will be as popular as Nick’s retro programming since wearing animated characters on shirts seems a little childish, but then again, that’s the point of nostalgia, and it’s been working for the network) (Cynopsis)

- It’s a tough time for the book business (but there may be a solution to help bookstores and publishers alike: printing on-demand. Espresso Book Machines enable a book to be printed in a matter of minutes, which means shelves don’t have to be stocked for paperbacks to sell. HarperCollins is making 5,000 titles available in this format and we’re curious to see how consumers respond) (WSJ)

- We bet teen girls will be flocking to theaters this weekend to see ‘Twilight’ star Taylor Lautner in the film ‘Abduction’ (about a teenage boy who finds out his parents aren’t really his. You won’t find werewolves and vampires in this flick, but we think it will be popular nonetheless. Speaking of movies, the Children’s Advertising Review Unit is angered

 
 

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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “I follow the news because it’s there and I can't avoid it.”—Female, 28, ME

Nike has taken the gold in Olympic ad engagement with a focus on authenticity. The brand’s 2016 Rio Olympic Games campaign “stepped beyond” “Just Do It” with a series of spots showing average people pushing themselves beyond their limits. The response to the approach has been overwhelmingly positive–viewers of one ad featuring a mountain climber born without arms and legs called it their “new favorite Nike video.” The campaign exceeded “any other brand in engagement rates,” earning 6.7 million shares and 6.5 million likes and favorites since March. (MediaPost

Facebook is taking a new swipe at Snapchat with a new camera-first app for teens only. Lifestage, created by a 19-year-old former Facebook intern, reimagines the original Facebook experience for teens today with profile pages filled with video clips and filters. Currently, the app’s network is limited to high school and undergrad students—users over the age of 21 can only see their own profiles. However, teens can see the profiles of all other users, “inside and outside” their schools, which could make privacy a concern. Facebook’s previous standalone apps have not found much success, leading the site to shut down their Creative Labs division last year. (The Daily Dot,BuzzFeed)

Unable to compete with social media, The New York Times is putting an end to its Millennial news app. NYT Now was launched in 2014 in an effort to lure in young readers with conversational content at a discounted price. After failing to attract new users, the app dropped its paywall for a freemium model that let users read up to 10 free articles a month. The updated strategy still did little to bring in a younger audience, averaging 257,000 unique users in the past three months. (Business Insider

College students are increasingly taking their athletic talents off the field. At many colleges, you don’t need to play traditional sports like football, track, or lacrosse to be a star athlete—instead, students are opting for sports that require “little prerequisite talent and less on-field aggression,” like ultimate Frisbee, rock climbing, fishing, and wood-chopping tournaments. Many of these alt-sport players discover the new competitive activities because they don’t fit the strict requirements to join other sports teams, and say inclusive team spirit and lack of competitive strife between opponents are major draws. (The Wall Street Journal

Most beauty brands are trying to draw in younger consumers, and Estée Lauder has strategic plans to keep Millennials happy. The brand’s recent profit boost was mostly generated by “color cosmetics brands like Estée Lauder, SmashboxMAC and Clinique,” but prestige fragrance and skin care continue to suffer. They plan to revive the segment by focusing on “selfie culture,” and count on the social media strategy that has fueled their makeup success to work on “instant-gratification” products like face masks and moisturizers. Partnerships with digital influencers, including those with lower but highly engaged followings, are also in the plans. (Fashionista)

Quote of the Day: “I like yoga because It can be used for the body, mind, breath, and soul if desired. I can do it alone or with other people. It can also be as short or long as I want.”—Female, 27, AR

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