Generation Y, sometimes known as Generation We, Millennials, the Echo Boomers, or Generation Next, are said to have birthdates falling roughly between 1980 and the mid-1990s.

They have also been dubbed Generation Sell—an expression coined by New York Times columnist William Deresiewicz— marked for their association to media, sales, the Internet, and Ronald McDonald.

The role of the younger audience is gynormous. According to the market research firm comScore, “The 79 million Millennials in the U.S. have an estimated purchasing power of $170 billion dollars per year, making them a highly attractive segment for brands to target.”

The impact of social media has been made pretty clear (about 81 percent of Gen Y consumers use Facebook everyday), but there’s more strategy to utilizing it than simply allowing users to ‘Like’ a page. Generation Sell is marked by a general devotion to small businesses and start-ups. Even large corporations, such as Apple Inc., have modeled more personal-looking marketing models to reach these younger consumers. Social media marketing to younger generations involves heavy reliance on related principles, such as the spread of ideas through word of mouth. For example, a retweet about a product from a friend will mean more to a person than simply seeing a tweet from a company.

MTV Scratch is a unit of Viacom that researches and works with brands about connecting to younger consumers. The New York Times explains how General Motors works with Scratch in marketing their vehicles to the younger generation of buyers because they “just do not care that much about cars.”

In a 3,000 participant survey of consumers with birthdates from 1981 to 2000, Scratch asked which of 31 brands each participant preferred. “Not one car brand ranked in the top 10, lagging far behind companies like Google and Nike,” the Times explained.

As Scratch senior vice president Anne Hubert put it, “Automakers are realizing that if they do not adjust to changing youth tastes, they risk becoming the ‘dad at the middle school dance.’”

Gen X and Gen Y are expected to overtake Baby Boomers in wealth by 2018, according to a 2008 Wealth Management study by Deloitte financial advisors. Deloitte’s project to help wealth managers connect with these generations includes tips in marketing such as offering transparency, simplicity, promotions of nonfinancial value, and developing messages that appeal to ‘emotional considerations’ such as environmental concerns.

It is no question the younger audience plays a crucial part in the marketplace and further holds great potential in being marketed to. While Generation Sell is often referred to as stubborn or hard to please, it is also a generation used to quickly-accessed information and a comfort with technology that is to be taken advantage of.

Creative Spot is working everyday to capture all age groups through research, focus groups, and strategizing ways to best meet consumers and target audiences that fit each client individually.

To find out more about what Creative Spot can do for your younger customers, set up a consultation today. You can contact us by email at, or call us at (614) 280-9280.