Trend Alert: Amazon Teen

Trend Alert introduces you to the latest brands, products and services that are trending with 16-24s.

Amazon has stepped up their strategy to create brand loyalty in the next generation of consumers with the launch of Amazon Teen. Recognising that teenagers have influence over their family’s spending, but don’t usually have their own bank card, the ecommerce giant has come up with a product that brings pocket money into the digital era. Amazon Teen allows 13 to 17-year-olds to create their own Amazon accounts, connected to those of their parents, who can approve their child’s purchases and set spending limits.

The service is being heavily promoted on Snapchat and Instagram via paid and organic content and influencer partnerships. Amazon’s “subtle” approach to spon-con was praised by our youth panel at YMS18 NYC (listen back to the session in the latest episode of our Youth Trends podcast). However, their “aggressive spamming” of teens on Snapchat has attracted concern from social media experts. The ads provide a pre-written text message which the teen can send to their parent or guardian, directing them to an Amazon page where they can grant their child access to their account via the Amazon Teen program.

Amazon’s increased focus on the teen demographic brings up some ethical questions, but it also demonstrates that the world’s largest online retailer is thinking ahead. They realise that by encouraging today’s teens to create a habit of going to Amazon first when they want to make a purchase, they can earn brand loyalty with a group who will become the world’s most powerful consumers in years to come. There are undoubtedly similar motivations behind the reduced price, and extended free trial, of Amazon’s Student Prime program.

Amazon clearly sees huge value in the teen market, but this is not a case of unrequited love: the ecommerce brand consistently places high in polls of Gen Z’s favourite retailers. It might not be the most stylish or edgy, but they love the convenience of a one-stop-shop where products of all kinds can be found at a competitive price, sold by a familiar and trusted name.

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