In Chapter 10, many microcultures are identified including generation culture. Within the generation culture are the following generations: greatest generation; those who were young adults during World War II, baby boomers; those born between 1946 and 1964, generation X; those born between 1865 and 1980, and the millennials; born between 1981 and 1995. For this assignment write an essay discussing the influence your generation had and still has on consumer behavior.
The culture of a specific generation has no doubt an influence on their consumer behavior. The experiences that a specific generation has been through might be identified to the experiences of that same generation at another time. A group that is from a generation that share the same experience and live during the same time is called a cohort (Babin & Harris, 2015, p.207). I personally would identify myself with the Millennials cohort. Millennials were born between 1981 and 1995 (Babin & Harris, 2015, p.207). This is the time period where we have seen the technological boom that could have well influenced the consumer behavior of this generation including me. In this essay I have provided an overview of the influence of the Millennials on consumer behavior.
In their book, Millennials Go to College, Howe & Strauss (2007), provided a contextual overview of some of the characteristics of the Millennials. The have called this group as totally different from their parent generation or Baby Boom and their predecessors, Generation X. Millennials have been categorized as the most team oriented and politically aware generation ever. This is the group that has the lowest rate of suicide, teen pregnancy and abortion according to Howe & Strauss. With this much differentiation, Millennials have to possess a totally different consumer behavior in my opinion.
As I earlier said that Millennials had to experience a unique type of experience in their life time and they are still going through the age and experience of innovation and an unstopping technological advancement. The behavior of this generation is personally influenced by multiple factor happening around them. This generation has seen a world changing rapidly. From a black and white TV and a telephone to an HD LED and a sophisticated mobile phone, they have seen and experienced it all.
Millennials is the only generation in my opinion that can be targeted by all modes of advertisement in the present time. For example if you want to target Generation X who were born between 1965 and 1980, you might still need to access them with TV and Radio only. On the other hand the generation that is born after 1995, has to be targeted by internet and HD channel advertisements. With the Millennials, marketers have the luxury to find them just anywhere. They watch classics on TV, they watch HD TV, they still listen to Radio and they love the internet.
Research is under way in the field of marketing to understand the needs of the Millennials. One study has suggested that to understand the consumer behavior of Millennials, researchers might want to assess their childhood culture experience (Young & Hinesly, 2012). I would personally like to be part of such research as I also think that during my childhood I had to go through a cultural shock as everything was changing so rapidly. It was hard to adopt to new technologies introduce so rapidly. For example if look at the 1990’s, the world mover from a DOS or disk operating system for computer usage with command prompt to Windows 1995 which is a graphical user interface and uses a mouse instead of putting in text commands.
The Millennials were the first to experience the online revolution as a group. Therefore the research that focuses on the online consumer behavior may be revolving around this age group. The new generation is an indoor generation in my opinion. They stick to their computer and play computer games instead of going out and playing outdoor. In contrast, the Millennials are the ones who still know that there is an outside world that also needs to be seen and explored.
Babin, B. & Harris, E. CB7, 7th Edition.
Howe, N., & Strauss, W. (2007). Millennials go to college. Great Falls, VA: LifeCourse Associates.
Young, A. M., & Hinesly, M. D. (2012). Identifying Millennials’ key influencers from early childhood: insights into current consumer preferences. Journal of Consumer Marketing, 29(2), 146-155.