Millennials are the largest and the most unique American generation ever. It is general knowledge that millennials are confident, self-expressive, liberal, upbeat, and open to change. We have also come to discover that these category of the population tend to detach themselves from honored institutions like political parties and religion. Maybe this is in part due to the fact that the millennials are the most educated, tech savvy, and diverse generation in the American history.
In fact, many studies have shown that millennials don't spend their money on the kind of things their parents and grandparents do. A 2014 Time report indicated that millennials spend less money on things like health insurance, wedding, homes, investments, pay TV, e.t.c.
The question then is what do this category of people spend their money on. I recently had an encounter with Daniel Branch, the CEO of Slim's E-juice LLC. In the course of our discussion we came out with about 30 things that the millennials disproportionately spend more money on than the baby boomers.
I will be discussing five of these below:
1. Organic Food
Millennials are more concerned about purpose in all they do. Even though many millennials prefer less expensive and more convenient food, they're willing to pay more for fresh, healthy, and more environmental friendly food. This explains why millennials are more aligned with key food movements like organic agriculture than any other generations. A new survey from the Organic Trade Association which involves 1,800 households reveals that 52% of organic shoppers are millennials with children.
2. Athleisure and shapewear
Millennials believe in experience economy. They prefer to spend money on experiences rather than clothing. However, since athleisure clothing lends itself to experiences and activities, it has become very popular among the millennials.
Athleisure are casual clothing designed to be worn both for exercising and for general use. Because they are comfortable, versatile and acceptable in a variety of settings, it has become more than just cloth to the millennial. Forbes reported a total sales athleisure.
According to NPD Group, the market size of this clothing niche was about $44 billion in 2015. This is why brands that focus on marketing athleisure to the millennials have been recording a level of success over the past few years.
For instance, a comprehensive review of fabletics subscription marketing model reveals they mainly focus on the millennials. The same is applicable to functional wears like Lauren Silva Shapewear. For the millennials, it is all about experience, and companies that have incorporated this into their marketing strategy seems to be reaping the reward.
3. Travel and Adventures
Several reports have shown that Millennials travel more than any other generations. This is in part because of their love for experience over owning things. Gina Hall described millennial travel trends as exotic on a budget, and she is right.
Millennials would pick a travel destination either because they want to experience a particular culture or to learn something new on the journey. Just as Conde Nast Traveler reports described them, millennials are extremely curious people that are guided by a "virtual backpack of apps", with willingness to take educated risks for them to explore the world.
4. Cellphones and Apps
Millennials spend more than every other category of people in smart phone acquisitions as well. They are technologically savvy, so it is not surprising that most millennials find cellphones as indispensable gadgets that help handle most of their activities. From internet surfing to entertainment, cellphones are used to solve complex tasks.
The same is applicable to their use of apps as well. Mobile apps are the modern day virtual assistants for the millennials. The millennials use apps to handle all different kind of tasks and assignments.
5. Ride sharing
Aside experience economy,millennials have also dominated what we now know as sharing economy. Companies like Uber, Lyft, Airbnb, etc. have been successful because of the millennials openness to sharing. Millennials spend more on companies that engage in this type of sharing economic business model than any other category of people.