OMD UK has unveiled its Future of Generations research project that, for the first time ever, uncovers generational myths that are deeply ingrained in British society.
Developed by OMD UK’s Insight team and launched at an event at Soho Hotel, the study addresses the changes in attitude towards the youth, middle-aged and the elderly, accompanied by a blurring of traditionally perceived boundaries of age-appropriate behaviour and lifestyles.
The research smashes five generational myths:
- Younger generations are narcissistic and rude – 70% of teenagers would argue that they are concerned about social issues in the world, compared to 57% of the population.
- Teens have little influence in household purchases – Teenagers are actually involved in the majority of purchase decisions from food (81% involvement) through to cars (one in five indicate they are involved).
- The midlife crisis involves buying fast cars, travelling the world and spending the kids’ inheritance – we are seeing a new emerging trend of people starting to be more health orientated when they reach this pivotal time in their lives. Those aged 40-43 show the highest usage of My Fitness Pal after the 16-19-year-old audience.
- Older generations are lonely, isolated and not connected to others – Those of us over the age of 65 are the happiest group overall, with an average of 57% of people belonging to this age group rating their happiness between 8 to 10 on a scale of 1-10, compared to 42% of the total population.
- The younger generation are much more networked and bigger influencers than the older generation – 24% of those influencing financial decisions are aged 60+, with 84% of the younger generations arguing that they can learn from the older generation.
The large-scale, innovative study included a six-week online community, mobile ethnography and inter-generational focus groups. Learnings were then fed into an online survey with 3,000 Brits, which included implicit testing to allow OMD UK to uncover perceptions that are deeply ingrained into our subconscious.
Sarah Gale, Head of Insight at OMD UK said: “I’m incredibly proud to launch this game-changing research. It’s the first time that we’ve analysed the whole spectrum of generations within one study and the results are already being applied to marketing and communications strategies for our clients.
“Generations forms the next phase of our pioneering The Future of Britain research initiative that’s been at our core since 2013. We’re excited to launch our other studies over the next 12 months that will tackle the issues and topics that continue to shape our great nation.”
The full white paper is available to download here.