The stats don’t lie.
The 16-34 age group is connected to brands more than any demographic before them. A global study by Havas Worldwide in 29 countries (including Australia) found that 45 per cent maintain that “brands play an essential role in my life”. That fell to 35 per cent in the 35-54 group and 25 per cent of over-55s.
While younger age groups get their identity, self-image and a sense of belonging from brands, interestingly, 41 per cent grumble that brands don’t take them seriously and often depict themselves as caricatures. This is a dangerous mindset: 45 per cent believe they can determine a brand’s success.
A new report from Secret Sounds Connect called Love Song provided greater insight into what music fans expect from brands. Altogether the survey worked with 10,000 Aussies of all ages, but predominantly the 16-34 demo.
Love Song put a line between how younger music fans have a greater desire to make positive social changes, and they expect brands to help them do that. The study said, “These agents of change are younger and more influential than the average 18-34-year-old Australian. Their disposable income is high, they are deeply concerned about the environment and live for experience over material wealth.
According to Love Song, music fans and artists have the greatest influence on brands in 50 years, as high as when rock acts preached revolution, audiences created utopian societies within rock festivals, and thousands hit the streets for black justice, LGBTQIA+ rights and an end to Australia’s involvement in evil wars and trade with evil white regimes which practised apartheid in Africa. Another study, by the Case Foundation, said that 86 per cent of today’s millennials think their actions can contribute to change.
The study’s key insights provided on young Australian music fans were that 51 per cent have 500+ Instagram followers, much more influence than the average 18-34-year-old Australian, with only 17 per cent meeting the 500+ follower mark.
86 per cent feel that music is integral to who they are, engaged with music for around five hours a day, and 67 per cent actively seek out new music and love sharing it with people.
They have more money than the average Australian – a third have $10,000 in savings – and spend $442 a month on “experiences” and, on average, socialise 6.1 times a month with friends.
They care about the world, 34 per cent seek their inspiration from activists, only 21 per cent from celebrities. They’re a force for positive change: 92 per cent feel that young people need to engage with global issues for things to improve.