January 20, 2012

Generation Why Not?

Ambitious, tech-savvy, self-expressive, these are just a few traits of the new breed of Generation Y-ers hitting not only the professional world but defining the future of consumerism. They are experience driven, career focused, and attention craved, as new social platforms offer not only a broadened spectrum of opportunity and networking capabilities, but encourage entrepreneurship.

Children of the iconic Baby Boomer generation and born somewhere between the late 70’s and 2000, these young professionals are controversially referred to as the "Peter Pan Generation," the "Me" Generation, the "Millenials," and Generation "Now." Despite being highly educated and informed, many are still unable to maintain a stable career due to economic wearies and a highly competitive job market, leaving some dependent on their parents while they commit to unpaid internships and develop work experience and portfolios.

photo via Pinterest

They are dreamers and for them, anything is possible. Many of these "Millenials" are disinterested in the idea of landing a job at a fortune 500 company with a routine 9 to 5 schedule. Instead, entrepreneurship, start-ups, and freelance work call their names. They want more control over how, when and where they spend their time. With increased access to news and information via the internet, social networking, and new gizmos and gadgets, this idea of “doing good” pairs with increased awareness about what is really going on in the world. Things are falling apart and they want to be the ones to not only pick up the pieces, but put together a new puzzle. Generation Y-ers want to be successful and feel good about it in the process.

photo via youtube.com

From blogging to tweets, facebook, gchat, and the latest platform, google+, they put it all out there, to an extent. Statistics show that two-thirds of Facebook users in this age range of 18 to 29 are reluctant to list employer's information among their backgrounds. To them, it's more about getting their voices heard and their personalities recognized and guess what? We're listening. Such blogs as Mr.Kate, Life Without Pants, and Thought Catalog are perfect examples of this new digital breed of DIY, witty put-it-all-out-theres with advice, articles, and videos touching on subjects on everything from, "The History of Glitter" to "Generic Things Everyone Does When Falling In Love."

So where do they shop? What do they buy? For this group of self-expressionists, it's all about being unique. They want meaningful things that are special and well, affordable. From DIY to vintage, hand-me-downs, and personalized items, they look to sites like Etsy, Ebay, and Craigslist. Not only do these sites give consumers the satisfaction of potential one of a kind items, but allows creativists and collectors alike the chance to partake in the entrepreneurial spirit by not only selling used things but selling what they make. For these "Millenials,"it's all about standing out whether that be through the way they dress, the gadgets they have, or the brands they associate themselves with. Not only do they like to be identified as "individuals," but this group is the most diversified generation in history and often referred to as the "First Globals."

Still, many companies struggle to understand this generation "now" from marketing tactics to employment. Despite social media marketing efforts, word of mouth still goes farther with this group of individualists when it comes to purchasing power. While they want to be noticed, they also want approval from peers. They are the era of change, as this new mentality of anything goes and “uniqueness” takes over. It’s still about success but with a renewed attitude of enjoying it along the way.

When asked about their dreams or what they want out of life, many respond with a simple reply of “happiness” but without a clear explanation of what that is. This is the generation that grew up with parents preaching, "you can do anything you want to do." Therefore, they won't settle for anything less. What companies need to understand is that this group of dreamers, are the future and they need to pinpoint exactly how to approach these prospective customers. Maybe they are more lost than other generations before, but they are figuring it out and determined to find this so called “happiness,” whatever that means. Generation Y, keep dreaming about your futures, as companies continue to "dream a little dream" of YOU!


  1. Love this. Very informative and interesting.

  2. I wanna be a "gen Y" now!


Creative Commons License
MBF Trend Talk by MBF Trend Consulting is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
Based on a work at mbf-trendtalk.blogspot.com.