【媒库文选】Why Xennials Are Different

2017-11-13 12:20   参考消息网  

here's a new name for the in-betweeners. Marketers have identified a tribe of New Adults, or as the sociologist Professor Dan Woodman recently termed them: Xennials.

The influence of these thirty to fortysomethings is not to be underestimated. They are redefining what they want from work, relationships, family and life, and they are extremely valuable. Generation X and Y combined make up 41 per cent of the UK population, and despite millennials being saddled with student debt and struggling to get on the housing ladder, Xennials are still spending on the same pursuits that they used to in their twenties.

The marketing company Walter Thompson was the first to research this micro tribe, and found it to be different to those between which it is sandwiched.

According to a report by the Innovation Group, Xennials are leaving marriage and children later than ever — the average age for marriage in the UK has risen to 31 for women, 33 for men and for motherhood to 30 — and 61 per cent of them believe that we never become adults. Brands were quick to spot this “Peter Pan market” of people clinging on to youthful activities, from concert going to colouring in.

It's this eternal youth that's driving Xennials'ambitions. The most entrepreneurial generation to date, they are moving out of London in huge numbers and searching for careers that feed their soul, not just their wallet. Xennials began work in a climate of rapid change, in which they have been forced to adapt, retrain and switch jobs. “Xennials are redefining what adulthood means,”says Lucie Greene, the director of the Innovation Group. “It's a generation that's growing up, but not letting go of youth.

“They are not entering adulthood like their parents. They're not moving to the suburbs, they're reinventing cities like Bristol and Margate. Thanks to the blurring of adult stages, now you don't stop going to festivals, going to the gym and buying jeans when you're 40 and have kids.”

They're politically engaged on social media, of which they are among the biggest users. They are wellness warriors, seeing holistic health as vital to their wellbeing, following trailblazers such as Gwyneth Paltrow and Jasmine and Melissa Hemsley. They demand natural ingredients and use technology to monitor their health, from Fitbits to fertility apps.

They're also approaching parenting in a new way — looking for flexible careers, launching businesses so that they can work from home and sharing childcare more than ever. Even when they become parents, Xennials are still going to festivals— the average age of attendees at Glastonbury is 37. And the generation who backpacked around the world in their youth still seeks adventure travel, even with kids.

If all this seems exhausting, just wait until Generation Z grows up. Because if businesses are struggling to adapt to Xennials' changing demands, they had better prepare for what's next. These two to 19-year-olds — the first true digital natives, virtually born with an iPhone in their hands — are already starting their own businesses and brands, mining the internet for references. They are also becoming stars in their own sphere.

“If Xennials grew up in the reality TV era where anyone could be a celebrity, Gen Zs are creating their own media platforms, side-stepping the networks entirely with YouTube and Instagram,” Greene says. “Xennials are just a transitional generation.”