YAYA consumers are dependent on their phones, using them as a platform to keep up with what their friends are doing and manage their social lives. One of their top management tools is a filter, which is just as important as the picture itself nowadays.

Filters give YAYA socialites the creative license to transform a flat and boring photo into an ideal, colorful image. According to Canva, a unique design software program, “applying a filter can increase the number of views and comments your post receives.” So, which filter will lead to the most likes? Canva says America’s number one most-used filter is Clarendon because “it’s an all-purpose filter that brightens, highlights, and intensifies shadows for color that pops. This is no secret to YAYA consumers who can filter, edit and crop their images for any social network. Facebook now offers editing options for profile pictures based on the weather or season, and Instagram is constantly updating its filter options for users. If these filters don’t meet the YAYA demographic’s fancy, they know where to find more: Photo editing apps like VSCO offer countless filters and enhancers to position a photo (and social appearance) in the best light possible for followers and friends.

So why do filters matter so much to this age group? In a joint study done by Yahoo and Georgia Tech, adding a filter increases engagement. “By using the “right” filter, you can increase a selfie’s viewability by 21%, and the number of comments by 45%,” said Refinery 29. YAYA users know that a high-quality photo receives more favor, which is why they take their social media appearances very seriously. It’s not uncommon to hear YAYA consumers talk about their Instagram aesthetic; the filters they use and the quality they put forward is considered to be a direct reflection of their personal brand.

To them, the perfect filter is crucial because this age group is drawn to visually appealing content. After all, our brains process visual cues 60,000 times faster than text. This is why businesses must capitalize on good, quality photographic content. Marketing products with a visually appealing aesthetic increases the probability of connecting with the YAYA population. According to the website Campaign, “Brands are realizing that by combining their messaging authentically with art and innovation, additive experiences can be created for consumers.”

Ultimately, marketing products visually through social media will increase product exposure among the 18-to 24-year-old age group, which is critical because they will soon be prime decision makers in companies, families and other organizations. So, when in doubt, use a filter and the YAYA population is sure to pay attention and give it a ‘like.’  

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Written by: Claire Zou, Kristy LaRue and Laurel Kasten 

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