Ypulse Essentials: Grammys Go After Millennials, Making The Most Of 90s Nostalgia, Social Media In China

Grammy AwardsThe Grammy Awards is clearly catering to the Millennial audience (with a few new additions this year. A Grammy Live streaming broadcast with social tie ins begins this Friday following all the activities leading up to the big event and new technology to get official releases of show performances online almost immediately. In a nod to youth music trends, the Grammys has also added a dance/electronica segment to the show. The category nominees, including Deadmau5 and Lil Wayne, will perform in a tent amid 1,000 pumped up fans) (Giga Om) (NYT, reg required)

- It’s no secret that Millennials are nostalgic for the 90s with ‘retro’ TV shows and fashion (making a comeback. But how are brands making the most of it? Some are cashing in on bringing back certain styles with an updated flair, blending modern technology with retro accessories — like a handset for a cell phone, and introducing 90s attitude in current media) (Fast Company)

- Check out this infographic about the social media scene (in China. With the “great (fire) wall” that bars young people from the social sites popular in the U.S. and other countries, Chinese youth have adopted copycat sites. The most common way they log on? Cell phone! Although social media has been part of some pretty powerful movements, its real power is creating local change, according to one expert) (Derek Baird) (PSFK)

- Chances are, you’ve done your share of shoe doodling (or you know someone who has. Now Vans is turning that talent into a money making opportunity for crafty students who can submit their shoe designs for a chance to win $50,000 for their school’s art program. Break out your markers and get sketching) (IHeartDaily)

- Teens love texting, and they even read texts from brands (according to DoSomething. The challenge with text…

 
 

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“As a graphic designer, without the arts being available to me in school I would have been lost as a child and where to take my career path. The fact that schools are cutting art programs is heartbreaking.”—Female, 24, NJ

Applebee’s is putting down the sriracha and giving up on trying to appeal to Millennials. The brand has decided their newer menu items—like a “triple pork bonanza” sandwich—and attempt at a “modern bar and grill” reinvention has “alienate[d]” Boomers and Gen Xers. They’re shutting down more than 130 restaurants and bringing back initiatives from before their attempted “pendulum swing towards millennials,” all-you-can-eat specials and 2-for-$20 deals. Other brands are creating new spin off chains to appeal to fast-casual lovingMillennials, that “[lack] the associated baggage of the old.” (Inc, NPR)

Adults-only ball pits, bouncy houses, and giant slides are sweeping the U.K. Millennials seeking a break from adulthood are flocking to places like Wacky World’s “massive bouncy-castle obstacle course,” which started out as a children’s event. The founder received so many requests that now every event has an 18-and-over slot, and has expanded to 19 cities. This “trend for arrested development activities” is caused by nostalgia, but the influx of marketing and branding leveraging the emotion could be popularizing these playgrounds for adults. (The Guardian)

Facebook is responding to the trend of asking for birthday charitable donations by integrating it right into the platform. Users in the U.S. can now trade in all the “HBD”s they get on Facebook for donations to the cause of their choice: well-wishers will be notified of the birthday along with the selected non-profit, and get the chance to donate. Facebook will ask users which charity they wish to dedicate their day to two weeks in advance, allowing them to choose from 750,000 organizations. (TNW)

Appear Here is the Airbnb of pop-up shops, giving brands their perfect temporary store for the new era of retail. The company finds short term retail space, and has worked with big-name brands like Nike and Net-a-Porter to open “experimental activations” or “test new products.” As brick-and-mortar continues to suffer and long-term stores close, Appear Here says physical retail is still needed, but to “tell a story.” The pop-up industry was valued at $50 billion in 2015, and provides a more low-risk, flexible option to avoid the retail wasteland. (Glossy)

Millennials & Gen Z are turning a profit online and on mobile by re-selling their retail. Thredup, Poshmark, and Depop are just a few of the most popular brands cashing in on the resale economy’s $18 billion market, and some shoppers say they are making $300 a week on the platforms. Some are also using social to sell, often in conjunction with apps or sites, including Snapchat, Facebook Groups, and Instagram. College students on a budget are reportedly especially drawn to resale, thanks to convenience, value, and access to luxury at a lower price. (FN)

“Adult means being entirely independent. I pay my own bills, make all decisions in my life, and feel very in control.”—Male, 20, NY

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