Millennials Want To Be “Special” & That Spells Bad News For Brands

A Q&A with Australian comedian Chris Lilley, who plays a 17-year-old girl as the title character in the new "Ja'mie: Private School Girl," his fourth mockumentary-type series in which he serves as producer-writer-actor. Illustrates TV-LILLEY (category e), by Rachel Lubitz © The Washington Post. Moved Friday, Nov. 22, 2013. (MUST CREDIT: BEN TIMONY/ We TV)

Just when you thought those dreaded Millennials couldn’t be any more painful comes a new study that shows they want to feel special, too.

The study by research firm Daymon Worldwide found that the Millennials (those born after 1980) want to feel special, unique and want to stand out far more than their parents’ or grandparents’ generations.

This graph shows the Ys desire to be seen different to their peers over the Boomers and the Xers.

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However, Millennials being special means bad news for brands that sell chain, branded stuff (think Gap or Aussie surf brands), but it’s good news for companies that sell “unique” experiences such as travel trips to far off distant (Instagrammable?) places (think Chile).

Other brands that the Millennials love are the new fashion chains such as Zara and H&M that allow them to regularly update their wardrobes for little outlay.

Last week, B&T revealed the latest findings of the Ipsos Mind And Mood Report that revealed (other than travel) the Millennials had little interest in owing much at all really.

The report’s author Laura Demasi said of the Ys: “You only need look at the (low) rate of car ownership (among the Ys) to know it’s not about ‘stuff’ for them. Their drivers in life are personal fulfilment, happiness and experience. And that’s it!”

And if you thought the Millennials represented trouble then the generation after – the Zs – are going to be worse again.

Marcie Merriman, Gen Z expert and executive director of growth strategy and retail innovation at Ernst & Young, has called the Zs “Millennials on steroids”.

In an recent interview with Business Insider, Merriman said that the Ys do have some brand loyalty but the Zs have none.

“So it really is a level of tolerance and what they’re willing to accept, and a degree of brand loyalty. So Millennials still have a little bit of loyalty to different brands or places that they have shopped,” she said.

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