Category Archives: The Market

Young Adults

OUR MILLENNIALS

Some say Gen Y, or Millennials, are a lazy, over-parented, indulged cohort.  Being the mother of two Millennials, both parents, home-owners and extremely responsible young men, I tended to strongly disagree.  Are you sensing a “but” here?

I wanted to see if this is true statistically.  So I embarked on a study of current census data, and to my surprise and delight, the United States Census had already done this for me!  What I found is that there is striking statistical support for some of these beliefs.

Below is a summary table of some of the information collected and collated by the government.  What is most illuminating is that almost one third of this cohort lives with their parents, while only one quarter did a quarter century ago.  A huge number live in poverty, more than 13.5 million, while only 9.5  million lived under the same conditions in 1990.  This is not good news!

Young Adults Table

In 1990, 15% spoke a language other than English at home.  Now about one in four are brought up in a household in which English may not be spoken at home.  What we all know is true, these young people are 43% “minority,” whereas only 27% were in the “minority” in 1990.  This is a positive in our country, since we are all “minorities,” and we are all immigrants, but classifications have changed since we emigrated from Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, and other continents.

One great finding is that 22% have earned a Bachelor’s Degree or higher, while only 17% had this level of advanced education in 1990. And remember, many of these people are on their way to earning a Bachelor’s degree because they are still in college.

Analyzing these data in graphic form illuminates these findings.

1.  Median earnings are waaaay down in the past quarter century!

Median Earnings.JPG

2.  This population segment is highly diverse.

Millenials Figure 2

3.  Asian Americans show about 60% of this cohort in college, while Blacks and Hispanics show increases in student enrollment, making up 30% of each of their population bases in this age range.

Millenials Figure 7

4.  We need more Millennials in the STEM fields!

Millenials Figure 8

5.  Student debt is a big problem for our college students.

Millenials Figure 9

6.  About half of college students are working, a bit less than in 1990 when that total was about 60%.

Millenials Figure 12

7.   Women are out-pacing men in Bachelor’s Degrees conferred and with some Graduate School.  It has been this way since 1994!

Millenials Figure 22

8.  As always, with this generation, the higher the level of education, the higher the average household income.

Millenials Figure 18

9.  And for older Millennials, long unemployment as a percentage of total unemployment is higher than ever, up from 15% in 1977 to over 40% in 2014.

Millenials Figure 21

10.  Millennials are marrying older.

Millenials Figure 26

11.  Educated Millennials are having kids later.

Millenials Figure 28

12.  And almost a third still live with parents.

Millenials Figure 29

My conclusions from these data is that Millennial issues stem more from  the Great Recession, and the fact that they are dogged by student debt rather than their lack of ambition.  They entered the workforce at a terrible economic point in our history.  As REAL wages increase, and the economy improves, they will quickly be absorbed into the grown-up population.

Tell me what you think.  I always love hearing from our readers!

Advertisements

THE POWER OF GLOBAL GENDER PARITY

I am just back from ICSC.  Besides much discussion of the demise or denial of the demise of  bricks and mortar shopping opportunities, I saw a presentation about this “Gender Parity” study completed by the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI).  Take a look!

Click Picture to Download Report

“Narrowing the global gender gap in work would not only be equitable in the broadest sense but could double the contribution of women to global GDP growth between 2014 and 2025. Delivering that impact, however, will require tackling gender equality in society.

“MGI has mapped 15 gender equality indicators for 95 countries and finds that 40 of them have high or extremely high levels of gender inequality on at least half of the indicators. The indicators fall into four categories: equality in work, essential services and enablers of economic opportunity, legal protection and political voice, and physical security and autonomy.  We consider a “full-potential” scenario in which women participate in the economy identically to men, and find that it would add up to $28 trillion, or 26 percent, to annual global GDP in 2025 compared with a business-as-usual scenario. This impact is roughly equivalent to the size of the combined US and Chinese economies today. We also analyzed an alternative “best-in-region” scenario in which all countries match the rate of improvement of the best-performing country in their region. This would add as much as $12 trillion in annual 2025 GDP, equivalent in size to the current GDP of Japan, Germany, and the United Kingdom combined, or twice the likely growth in global GDP contributed by female workers between 2014 and 2025 in a business-as-usual scenario.

“Both advanced and developing countries stand to gain. In 46 of the 95 countries analyzed, the best in-region outcome could increase annual GDP in 2025 by more than 10 percent over the business as-usual case, with the highest relative boost in India and Latin America.

“MGI’s new Gender Parity Score, or GPS, measures the distance each country has traveled toward gender parity, which is set at 1.00. The regional GPS is lowest in South Asia (excluding India) at 0.44 and highest in North America and Oceania at 0.74. Using the GPS, MGI has established a strong link between gender equality in society, attitudes and beliefs about the role of women, and gender equality in work. The latter is not achievable without the former two elements. We found virtually no countries with high gender equality in society but low gender equality in work. Economic development enables countries to close gender gaps, but progress in four areas in particular— education level, financial and digital inclusion, legal protection, and unpaid care work—could help accelerate progress.

“MGI has identified ten “impact zones” (issue-region combinations) where effective action would move more than 75 percent of women affected by gender inequality globally closer to parity. The global impact zones are blocked economic potential, time spent in unpaid care work, fewer legal rights, political underrepresentation, and violence against women, globally pervasive issues. The regional impact zones are low labor-force participation in quality jobs, low maternal and reproductive health, unequal education levels, financial and digital exclusion, and girl-child vulnerability, concentrated in certain regions of the world.

“Six types of intervention are necessary to bridge the gender gap: financial incentives and support; technology and infrastructure; the creation of economic opportunity; capability building; advocacy and shaping attitudes; and laws, policies, and regulations. We identify some 75 potential interventions that could be evaluated and tailored to suit the social and economic context of each impact zone and country.

“Tackling gender inequality will require change within businesses as well as new coalitions. The private sector will need to play a more active role in concert with governments and non-governmental organizations—and companies could benefit both directly and indirectly by taking action.”

http://www.mckinsey.com/global-themes/employment-and-growth/how-advancing-womens-equality-can-add-12-trillion-to-global-growth

 

The Best Job I Ever Had

Oscar Museum 2

Ten years ago, in about 2004, I got a call from a prospective client, a newly hired director of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences museum project, asking if I would be interested in conducting some market research for a new attraction/museum themed on the Academy Awards.

Would I Ever!!!

I had been the one lucky enough to do the work for the Dolby Theater at Hollywood & Highland where the ceremony takes place, so it seemed a good fit and logical that I continue on to do the museum feasibility.  But my joy, my heart, for Hollywood, no one knew that!

No One Had Ever Known That:

  • My family had always been in the entertainment business, with my father involved on the business side, having been a pioneer in the cable television industry.
  • My aunt always working for this or that movie star as an executive assistant.
  • I was lucky enough to visit the back-lot of 20th Century Fox before it was Century City!
  • I spent countless hours watching movies being filmed, then sitting in theaters watching them roll by me on the big screen.

Would I be interested?  Heck, yea!!

Since that time, I have been the consultant called upon to do the background market research, analysis and financial projections for the site selection, sizing and operation of museum.

I learned a thing or two during those years like:

  • I gained a deep knowledge of large museums and what keeps them thriving.
  • How an endowment can shrink during a deflation.
  • Money earmarked to never-be-touched has a way of disappearing in hard times.
  • I learned about the conundrum of keeping things fresh so that resident visitors will keep returning, time and again.

I am thankful that my job always changes and that I always learn, no matter the engagement.

Picture of Oscar 2Over the years, we have wrestled with all the issues associated with new development including disagreements about what it should look like, what its mission should be, where it should be sited, who is its targeted audience (please, don’t say everyone!), and what’s the best way to keep the project on-time and on-budget.  To be clear, these issues are complex and are made more difficult when there are many masters to serve.  Still, when the project is to reflect the points of view, hopes, dreams, and legacies of America’s most important cultural export, (which I believe is cinema) there must be the most careful consideration to each one.

This was my best job ever.  Write and tell me about yours in the comments below.

WHICH GENERATION TO TARGET?

We are all fans of the newest consumers to come of age, the Millennials. These young adults, who are now aged 19 to 33 and number almost 70 million, are the darlings of the marketing world. But in their rush to capture the hearts and minds of these young consumers, who are now forming their first real households, many brands are forgetting about the other generations.

To help our colleagues drive sales to adults in various life stages, we created an easy chart to start the conversation. A discussion of these groups is like teenage sex: everyone talks about it, nobody really knows how to do it, everyone thinks everyone else is doing it, so everyone claims they are doing it.

Generational Market Segments

· Swing and World II

  • Born between 1909-1945image
  • 33.7 Million
  • 69 or Older
  • 14% of Adults
  • Health Care Consumers
  • “Grandchildren” Spending
  • Delayed Gratification
  • Moderation
  • Discipline
· Baby Boomers

  • Born between 1946 – 1964image
  • 74.9 Million
  • Ages: 50 – 68
  • 32% of Adults
  • Multi-generational Consumers
  • Drivers of Growth in Leisure/Hospitality
  • Still Individualistic and “Rebels”
  • Starting to think about retirement
  • Forever Young
  • 45 Million Grandparents
· Gen X

  • Born between 1965 – 1980image
  • 60.4 Million
  • Ages: 34 – 49
  • 25% of Adults
  • Boomer Parents
  • Divorced Parents
  • Insecure
  • Practical in Consumption
  • Diversity
  • Responsible
  • Use Web Extensively
· Gen Y / Millennials

  • Born between 1981 – 1995image
  • 67.9 Million
  • Ages: 19 – 33
  • 29% of Adults
  • Ethnically Diverse
  • Tech Savvy
  • Multi-Tasker
  • Need Lots of Input
  • Prefer Health to Wealth
  • Prefer Mobile Communication
  • Omnicultural
· Gen Z

  • Born between 1996 – 2010image
  • 46 Million
  • Ages: 5 – 18
  • Structured Schedules
  • Over Managed
  • Info in Short Grabs
  • Multi-Tasker
  • Tech Savvy/Omnicultural
  • The “I” Generation

Source: JB Research Company

(For a Printable Chart, Click Here.) 

Each generation has a special way it likes to be approached, and each responds differently to messaging. For example, Boomers still shop in department stores, although certainly not as much as when the oldest boomers, now 69, were kids. Gen Y rarely shops in department stores unless it is one of the “cool” ones, which include Nordstrom’s or Barney’s. Or when they are shopping for their parents’ Christmas gifts, so they can be easily returned to a convenient location.

In terms of amount spend per visit to the mall and department store, the 45-54 age group cuts across two generations, Gen X and Baby Boomers. Department store spending, however, is highest among Boomers, while all other spending is highest again across Gen Y and Boomers. Teenagers visit the mall most frequently, but understandably, do not spend much per visit.

image

In terms of wealth, an interesting analysis indicates that Gen X, a sector largely ignored by great brands, is a real contender when it comes to income, net worth and wealth. The difference between income and wealth is that income is what you earn every year, and wealth is the totality of your assets minus your liabilities. According to the United States Department of the Census Current Population Survey, net worth and total income is as follows in 2013:

image

In terms of net wealth, Baby Boomers hold the highest percentage of net worth dollars at 34% and the highest share of total income dollars, at 39%. The second highest is held by Gen –X at 29% of net worth dollars and 31% of total income dollars. Millennials hold 21% of net worth, and about 18% of total income dollars. Again, markets with the most money are Boomers and Gen-X.  But that is because Gen Y is young, and on their way to being the consumer heavyweight in the next 20 years.

Some salient characteristics of each of the largest buying generations, Boomers and Gen-X include the following:

.  Gen- Xers have money! They make up 25 % of all adults, but hold 29% of all net worth and 31% of all annual income earned. Half of them want to provide for their kids’ college, and almost all want to save for retirement. Two thirds plan on traveling for pleasure in the next year, and half will buy one or more luxuries.

· Boomers on the other hand, buy things for themselves and their grandkids. They are omnichannel and know their way around the Internet of Things. They expect hype in their advertising because they invented it (Mad Men, anyone?) They are early adopters of smart medical devices and are very critical about experiential retail, again because they invented it.

While we’re at it, here are some characteristic of Gen Y and Gen Z.  Gen Y is completely omnichannel, and have said that they will pay for responsible products, although this has not yet been proven in the market. They will be early adopters of smart wearables, especially sport gear such as watches. They want a seamless shopping experience and they DO NOT WANT HYPE. Because of all the information thrown at them by their various smart devises, they want their lives simplified, so they have invented “curated” everything from experiences, to vacations, to cooking, shopping, to putting together furniture, to decluttering their lives. Think  YouTube, Yelp, H&M and Zara (fast fashion), shopping sites, and Pinterest. Because there are so many of them, and because they are just starting to become a force as couples, they are the generation that will take over next.

Gen Z is a whole other puzzle. They are not old enough to have much money of their own, but they will in the next ten years. They are overscheduled, but they are completely omnichanneled, cutting across every platform of technology. They are extremely entrepreneurial and want to be heard. They also want to try out products before they buy. In order to appeal to them now, you have to continually innovate and evolve digitally because they live on their devices.

The world is complicated today and is becoming more complicated as we evolve and innovate with our shopping methods and choices. The Internet of Things, such as magic RFID tags, augmented reality, delivery drones, curated experiences, wearable technology and life hacking are among the many new experiences we must excel at and then change our products and communication as they change. It is a brave new world!

Entertainment Evolution Experience

Happy New Year Friends!

I can’t believe so much time has passed since I last wrote.  We have been very busy and had a lovely holiday.  Hope all is well with you and your family.

We are reminding you to come and join us at an exceptional conference “Entertainment Evolution Experience” to be held February 18th and 19th at LA Live! in Los Angeles.  I will be speaking on a panel entitled, “Open Air Projects – Pushing the Envelope,” where we will discuss, among other things, the need for human contact and fresh air!

We would be thrilled to see you there!

Here are the details:

Shopping Center Business and InterFace Conference Group are pleased to highlight the following panel for the Entertainment Experience Evolution Conference, February 18-19, 2015 at LA Live in Los Angeles. The multi-day conference will focus on what developers, owners, restaurants, retailers, cinemas, designers and entertainment venues are doing to evolve the consumer experience and create vibrant places to spend time.

Featured Panel:

Open Air Projects –
Pushing the Envelope

Arguably the most active type of multi-tenant retail, open-air centers have grown beyond service retail to become true community environments. Find out how amenities, restaurants, landscaping, hardscaping, and placemaking are changing open-air retail. See case studies from developers and architects on the transformation of open-air centers, from regional lifestyle centers to power centers to small community centers.

EEE - Open Air Pushing the Envelope Speakers

For a complete agenda, click here.

To reserve your spot today, click here.

The New Face of Retail

Can you smell it?  Fall is in the air!  It may still be 85 degrees in sunny California, but the kids have returned to school, a crispness is the order of the day, and last weekend, I did my annual fall shopping.  The trip this year was much more measured than other years, as I suppose it is for most in the developed world.  The recession is alive, growth from the last few quarters has slowed, and there is still rampant uncertainty in all of our daily lives.

But that is not what I want to blog about today.  On my trip, I did my usual “people watching”  noting a subtle but noticeable shift in the gestalt of the crowd.  We visited our local mall which is owned by Macerich.  The shopping center was renovated in 2007 and a huge Target took over a vacated Robinson’s-May as one of the anchors.  Still, the mall floundered and felt like an unhappy place to me.  And then voila!  In the midst of the downturn, with unemployment still above 9 percent nationally and American companies holding on to more than $1.8 trillion in cash ( not investing, not hiring), a new sense of hope and purpose is in the air.  Unscientific you say?  Yes, but after so many years in the business I am a reader of attitudes, unspoken  intentions, a focus group unto myself.

What has caused this shift in outlook, turned the gray glasses to rose-colored?  I believe it is the retailers, some of whom are doing an excellent job of reading their markets.  With my husband in tow, we were given free treats at Cinnabun, Wetzels Pretzels, and See’s Candy while waiting in line to buy a low-cal coffee at Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf.  I smelled popcorn and saw several happy families with brightly colored red-and-white boxes.  Where did they get these cheery delicious snacks?  Target!  (Sears, you lose again, even though this was your idea in the first place!) And while waiting in line, I saw the Giant Surprise that H & M, one of my favorites, will be opening in our mall in less than two weeks.  The fast-fashion Swedish retailer made the excellent choice not to locate in a struggling new “upscale” lifestyle center in Oxnard (oxymoron, lifestyle center: Oxnard) which would have been a huge mistake!

As a very wise presidential candidate once said, “it’s the economy stupid!” and retailers that have learned to provide VALUE and fun in the shopping experience and in the goods and services they offer are faring well.  TJX, Ross, Forever 21 and now Bloomingdale’s Outlets are giving consumers what they want and need in today’s difficult world.  Free stuff, fun stuff, inexpensive stuff, value for the money!

So while the economic indicators continue to stump the experts, the American consumer is not giving up!  They will continue to shop (less and cheaper), eat sugar and popcorn, and hope for the much badly needed turnaround.  And this, my friends, is a self-fulfilling prophecy for a better year in 2012!

Understanding Your Market – By the Numbers

Analyzing demographics and psychographics is an incredibly useful tool to assist in every aspect of feasibility testing, new product development, and simple site selection.  The process used to be cumbersome, and not for sissies!  But since the advent of MapPoint, almost anyone can do a simple version of a demographic exercise.

The Beneficial Business Features of MapPoint:

  • MapPoint has an incredibly easy demographic feature.  Choose up to 16 different demographic points at once – such as population, income, household size, and age – and  then instantly  MapPoint arrays these features by state, county, city, MSA, zip code, or even Census tract.
  • A shaded map will show the various areas by any single demographic chosen – such as number of businesses per zip code, teenagers in a particular census tract, or household expenditure patterns for any city in the United States.
  • Once the demographic factor is selected and mapped,  a radius of any number of miles around a site can be created and then instantly exported to an Excel Sheet.  With the numbers in Excel, manipulating data to get a clearer snapshot of the type of customers  in or around the site is simple.
  • Radii can be adjusted, expanded or a second radius created and then re-exported  for a new area into another Excel Sheet.  By simply copying and pasting new numbers into the first Excel sheet and repeating for other locations or radii, an instant comparison of multiple locations is created.
  • MapPoint can also find and map competitors.  The map will not only list a fairly accurate number of competitors within a preselected distance from your business, but it will also pinpoint the exact distance of a business from your site, as well as their address and phone number.
  • You can import data from an Excel Sheet, and thus map multiple addresses.  This is an ideal tool  to determine where the customers on a  mailing lists are actually located.
  • Another useful feature in MapPoint indicates expenditure per household  for various products such as electronics, books, food, etc.   This information can also be narrowed to a particular radius and census tract, thus allowing a better picture of how much money people in your area spend in a year on your products.
  • Plus, on top of all that, MapPoint offers a GPS tool, and driving directions can be created based on shortest distances, preselected locations, and fastest routes.  It can also calculate the cost of gas required to visit those locations.

BELOW IS A MAPPOINT INCOME DIAGRAM FOR A LOCATION IN GLENDALE

Glendale Income Map

Very simple.  But you might have some questions.  If you do, call or email me. (jill@jbresearchco.com, 805-640-1060)  I’ve been doing this for 20+ years, with or without MapPoint!