McCann Truth Central Unveils The Truth About Youth
Truth Central, McCann Worldgroup’s global thought leadership unit, presented their latest study, The Truth About Youth, at The Lightbox, a very cool multimedia space in NYC. The event program offered this snapshot of the research and its implications for marketers:
“Millennials are their own breed of mobile consumer and the Snapchat-wielding Generation Z is surely a new species entirely. Young people today are living in a complex, post-authentic world where “Finstagram” is the “real” Instagram, the notion of “live streaming all day” is a viable career option and mobile bullying is an everyday reality. Only the marketers most tapped in to evolving youth mindsets will survive in this complicated new world.”
The Lightbox gave the audience a truly immersive, visual experience of the research as Laura Simpson, Truth Central Global Director and India Wooldridge, Truth Central SVP, Director presented the data. Some of the key takeaways:
- Youth today have evolved from “digital natives” to “accessibility natives”
- Adulthood is not an aspirational goal - it’s a fluid state you can dip in and out of depending on context
- The path to success is not linear – it’s about experimentation
- Social media presence is beginning to shape and lead young peoples' real life interactions
- Think of young people as Kaleidoscope Kids, constantly rifling through difference lenses and combinations of influence
In addition to the research, Truth Central put together a program featuring young entrepreneurs and social media influencers whose ages ranged from 15-26. They wowed the audience with their social media savvy and pure dedication to their passions.
26-year old Samantha Jane shared her journey from corporate employee to self-made writer/illustrator. A cold email to a Buzzfeed reporter resulted in a book deal for her collection of illustrations and poems, Quarter Life Poetry.
Teen inventor Ann Makosinski (age 18) and health tech company CEO Blake Marggraff (age 23) made the case for why being a “nerd" is the coolest thing you can be on a panel entitled, “Inventing the Future.” Ann invented the "Hollow Flashlight,” which uses the heat of your hand to light a flashlight while Blake leads a company at the intersection of medicine and consumer technology.
Switching gears to social media, we heard from the “new queen of content,” Lele Pons, a 19-year old global internet sensation on Vine. And last but not least, the audience was given a Master Class on YouNow from 15-year-old Zach Clayton, “the most famous person on a social network most people have never heard of.”
The half-day event was truly eye opening and revealed many truths for marketers that want to reach Millennials and our next obsession, Gen Z.