Internet slang has a place, but is that place in advertising? Text lingo and abbreviations are serious things for a brand to throw around because audiences are so polarized on the subject. There’s no doubt that brands use “slanguage” to target the YAYA demographic, but what do 18- to 24-year-olds really think of text talk?
Although keeping the vocabulary “hip and with it” can be helpful in some situations, it’s important not to force or fake it. YAYA consumers value authenticity, so it’s vital that a brand stays aligned with its voice and personality. Nobody likes a try-hard, especially young people. Sincerity is a brand’s best bet at peaking and keeping the interest of YAYA consumers.
Using text lingo and internet slang should come naturally, or odds are this demographic will tune out your message entirely. But don’t be discouraged from stepping into the YAYA world and trying to better understand phrases this age group uses on the reg. Just double check that this tactic makes sense in the context. According to our annual State of the YAYA report, 77 percent of YAYA consumers say that it’s more important to be unique than to be popular, showing just how much they value authenticity both for themselves and from brands.
The bottom line is that text lingo and internet slang have a defined place in advertising. We’re fans because it keeps the conversation fun. Unless you overuse the word “bae.” We’re looking at you, Chili’s.*
Macyn, Rosie, and Brianna
*Disclaimer: We actually love Chili’s. We’re big fans of Chili’s.
Youth and young adults, or YAYAs, have more resources than ever before when it comes to shopping. Gone are the days of basing purchases on word-of-mouth or remaining loyal to the brands their parents bought. Though YAYA consumers still rely heavily on the opinions of their peers, they have access to the opinions of millions with just a few taps on their smartphones. The prevalence of online reviews, discussion boards and social media chatter has changed the way the 18- to 24-year-old market shops. According to aMintel report, 60 percent of YAYA shoppers say they read consumer feedback about products online before buying, and 37 percent say they compare product’s online prices to those found in-store. The abundance of information allows them a sense of individuality and to venture away from the traditional brands of older generations.
Although the YAYA demographic has enjoyed online shopping for a while, they now rely heavily on online purchasing after leaving their parents’ homes. For possibly the first time, they’re shopping and paying for things on their own, so they might as well do it in the way that comes easiest. YAYA consumers grew up with technology, which is constantly becoming more efficient and pervasive in their lives. There’s no reason why they wouldn’t be lured by the speed and convenience of online shopping. According to our annual State of the YAYA report, 86 percent of YAYA consumers agree they shop online because it’s available, and 89 percent do it because it’s quick or convenient. They are in a new phase of life with a jam-packed schedule, making the balance of work or school and a social life difficult. Online shopping encourages YAYA shopper’s newfound independence and helps them take a step toward that work-life balance.
YAYA consumers also use online shopping to construct an identity for themselves. According the 2016 State of the YAYA market survey, these shoppers are extremely brand loyal, but not to their parents’ brands. With an infinite selection at their fingertips, they are departing from childhood brands and moving toward brands that reflect their adult personalities. The survey found that more than 70 percent of YAYA consumers agree the brands they choose are a reflection of themselves. Additionally, more than 60 percent say they will buy their favorite brand regardless of what is on sale.
YAYA shoppers choices go beyond the look and feel of items, as they discern what brands will say about their interests, concerns and lifestyles. More than half of this demographic agrees that they would not purchase products or services from companies whose social or political views do not align with their own. To attract these consumers, marketers need to consider what kind of social image their brand embodies. Aligning a brand with positive changes like environmental conservation or social acceptance goes a long way with YAYA shoppers.
It is nothing new that purchase habits change as one enters adulthood, and that is clearly the case for the YAYA demographic. But what is new is going through this life stage with an abundance of new technologies, social norms and means of crafting an identity. They are searching for a purpose in their young adult life while experiencing the thrill of making purchase decisions alone. Aligning your brand with the habits of these social, tech savvy YAYA consumers will get you loyal customers in no time. If your brand fits into their identity, they won’t be able to stay away.
For years, all marketers have talked about is millennials. They showered attention and money on them. But as millennials age, what should they do?
That’s where the YAYA market comes in. These 18- to 24-year old youth and young adult consumers are an elusive yet essential group for brands’ to target. Marketing to those in this life stage requires as much energy as daily exercise and flossing and it’s just as important. So when it comes to knowing what this age group is about, brands can turn to MOJO Ad for help in sifting through the fads and trends.
The YAYA market represents approximately 10 percent of the U.S. population, or 31 million people. While roughly 40 percent of YAYAs are pursuing higher education at a two or four-year institution, or are in the beginning stages of their careers, they have an impressive buying power. We know that reports indicate that millennial spending power will reach$1.4 trillionby 2020, meaning the buying power of the YAYA demographic will also grow concurrently as they move into the work force. Gaining the attention and the trust of the influential consumers in this life stage is essential for the long-term success of brands.
Possessing insight into the workings of this demographic will help brands to separate from their competitors. Current YAYA consumers believe in companies that are transparent and honest. Trying to use trite, deceptive marketing tactics won’t work for them. This is one of the many ways YAYA research can help companies tailor marketing plans to effectively reach this market.
The biggest thing for brands to remember is that the YAYA demographic isn’t a generation, it’s a life stage. So 10 years from now, when millennials move into middle age and the up-and-coming iGen is starting their families, the YAYA market will still be 18 to 24 years old. That’s why they aren’t the next big thing, they are the only thing.