Ypulse Essentials: Google++++, Digital Abuse Grows, Obama Needs Millennials To Win In 2012

Google+Maybe it should be called Google++++ (considering the fledgling social network managed to post a whopping 1269% increase in traffic over the previous week. What drove the huge leap? The network is now open to everyone and no longer requires invites. With an estimated 43 million users, and 15 million U.S. visitors last week, it rocketed to the 8th most visited social networking website. Does Google+ now have the muscle to beat out Facebook? This group of industry insiders is still undecided, but clearly the argument that “no one’s there” — which matters greatly to Millennials — no longer holds water) (ReadWriteWeb) (PSFK)

- Three quarters of 14-24 year olds say that digital abuse is a serious problem (for people their age, and 56% have experienced such abuse, up from 50% in 2009, according to research from MTV and Associated Press. What’s more, 41% of young people in relationships have experienced digital dating abuse, most commonly with their boyfriend or girlfriend checking up on them multiple times a day online or on their cell phones. Speaking of MTV, on a lighter note, the O Music Awards are back for fall with voting starting today. Celebrating the best in digital music, fans can vote for the Digital Genius Award, Most Addictive Social Music Service, Best Music Forum, and more. Winners will be announced during a live stream on October 31) (AThinLine)

- Young voters may have a significant role (in the 2012 presidential election. A record number of 18-24 year olds turned out for the 2008 elections, and this time around, they’ll be voicing their concerns about youth unemployment, student debt, and more. One way in which Obama has won over Millennials is through his attention to the issue of bullying, which even impressed Lady Gaga. Hollywood connections were influential for Obama…

 
 

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Quote of the Day: “New wedding traditions I’ve noticed are the return of the wedding band (not just DJ), and weekend activities even if the wedding isn't a destination.”—Female, 30, DC

The election inspired Millennials to start reading (some) major newspapers again. According to a Pew Research Center study, 44% of 18-49-year-olds received their election news from The New York Times, 37% received it from The Washington Post, and 27% went to The Wall Street Journal—compared to 23%, 19%, and 15% of those 50 and older respectively. Local newspapers did not get as much love from the younger generation, with only 23% turning to them compared to 67% of older consumers. (Fortune)

How did Vans get on every “cool kid’s radar?” They have their exclusive Vault line to thank. In the early 2000s, the shoe line was struggling to reach young consumers with their classic styles, so they were reimagined with collaborator-inspired designs and sold in limited quantities at higher price points in partner stores only. The strategy was “a marketing exercise for boosting energy and brand affinity,” and helped bring the brand to international levels, most likely driving a 7% increase last quarter. (Glossy

PepsiCo reports that almost half of its revenue now comes from healthy foods. With young consumers not drinking sweet carbonated beverages the way they used to, the brand pledged to cut calories from their sugary drinks but has been moving at a “glacial pace.” Almost half of their revenue is now coming from their “guilt-free” product category, like Baked Lay’s and Naked juices, 25% from “everyday nutrition” like water and healthier snacks, and the brand is admitting soda is “becoming a smaller part of” their future. (Grub Street

An app bringing tech to pre-K just secured $10 million in venture funding. Brightwheel helps pre-K teachers and daycare providers manage their business, while updating parents on their child’s status throughout the day with photos and messages. Along with premium access, it is available for free with limited features which the founder hopes would appeal to lower income communities: “Something like 85% of brain development happens in the first 3 years of life…Access to good pre-K care is low in the US, we’re ranked 26th globally. And we think tech can help to change that.” (TechCrunch

Over nine in ten of Millennials say the post-grad job hunt was difficult. The insight from a recent Job Applicator Center study reflects employers’ tendency to hire skilled workers for entry-level positions while overlooking recent graduates. The study also found that 18-34-year-olds have already had 2.7 jobs on average and 41% only plan to be at their current job for two years or less—most likely because they are looking for employers who invest in them beyond just salaries and benefit packages. (Job Application Center

Quote of the Day: “I want my wedding to be authentic, joyful and audacious.”—Female, 30, NE

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