Should brands target young people, or should they target their parents? C + R Research finds out:

We're proud to present a guest blog post from #YMS16 NYC partners, C + R Research. Should brands be aiming for the parents of Generation Z? 

At YouthBeat, we are in field every month of the year with a holistic survey of what is happening in the rhythms of youths’ lives, their leisure and media habits, and their consumption patterns, among other topics. We directly survey kids ages 6-18 in grades 1-12, as well as their parents. This allows us the unique opportunity to be able to look at how youths’ views, perceptions, and experiences evolve as they age.

When marketing products in the Youth and Family space, a common question our clients ask is, should my brand target our products to youth or to their parents? Our YouthBeat data zeroes in on the degree of influence children wield in a number of categories, and how this changes across the age spectrum.From an early age, kids certainly think that they are influencing and have a choice in what their parents buy for them. But we’ve found that it isn’t until they are teenagers that parents are giving their children the greatest autonomy on purchases. The following categories are where we see that teens are most likely to be given the option to pick out items to buy on their own:

  • Clothing: 63%
  • Food/Snacks: 60%
  • Candy/Gum: 55%
  • Shoes: 54%
  • Beverages: 50%

Some areas where parents still haven’t quite relinquished the purchasing power to their teens? That’s mainly with larger, more durable buys, as only 21% of teens are able to choose their ownElectronics/Gadgets and 17% their own Video Game Systems. These tend to be more negotiated purchases, with parents and youth putting their heads together to decide what will work best for the family.

Even when parents are helping choose or making the final decision on brands, teens in the United States really do have a great deal of influence over the products that are bought for them.But how does that compare to teens around the world? YouthBeat is now going global so we will be able to answer questions like these! With YouthBeat Global we can now compare the buying power and influence of teens in the United States with teens in the UK, Mexico, China, India and Australia, to help our clients inform their global product and communication strategies. At C+R and YouthBeat, our global services treat each local market individually, and elevate combined findings into actionable worldwide strategies for the entire Youth and Family space.

Tickets for our next New York event, #YMS16 NYC are now available.
For more information, contact Mary Mcllrath, Senior Vice President of YouthBeat, the youth and family division of C + R Research here.