To what extent is the consumer behaviour of Millennials different to that of previous generations in the area of entertainment? How does it affect to the Consumer Behaviour Decision Making Process?

As it has been seen on this video, Millennial generation, also known as Y generation, involves those people who were born between 1981 and 1995 (Burnett, 2016). However, there are other authors that would argue about this period of time, thus, for example for Nielsen (2014), this generation starts on 1977. Anyhow, despite this minor fact, these authors agree that Millennials share several features and preferences that make them different from other generations. Thus, Millennials are not very patients and they love getting things cheap, easy and as quick as possible (Schlossberg, 2015). Furthermore, they prefer to talk through technology rather than personally (Sinek, 2016), therefore, they love Wifi on physical places like restaurant, being a negative aspect if free Wifi is not offered (Schlossberg, 2015). Millennials love being connected to the Internet to spend their free time (Friedman, 2016a).

Ruiz Martos (2017)

These features have consequences on the consumer behaviour of this generation, for example, 33% of Millennials review blogs and social media before they make a purchase, but only the 3% of Millennials consider the traditional media like TV, news, magazines or books. However, older generations use to rely more on this traditional media (Schawbel, 2015). In this way, it is remarkable how the TV consumption by Millennials is decreasing progressively since 2012 (LaVanguardia, 2014; Statista, 2016). Thus, social media and mainly Youtube is substituting this traditional media (MarketingDirecto, 2013). An example of this fact is that Millennials are "devouring" cooking videos from Youtube, showing a loyal and enthusiastic behaviour while they are strongly involved with the channels (ThinkWithGoogle, 2015). Millennials is the generation that is consuming more cooking videos on Youtube (ThinkWithGoogle, 2015). In addition, the mobile devices allow the Millennials to watch the video wherever they are, which match with the characteristics of Millennials previously commented. The 75% of views of cooking videos are coming from mobile devices (ThinkWithGoogle, 2015). According to Youtube (2017), this network reaches more Millennials people in U.S than any other cable network. The main reasons why Millennials prefer Youtube rather than traditional media are: (1) They can skip most of the advertising (MarketingDirecto, 2013) because they do not like them (Schawbel, 2015), (2) They can watch their favourite shows anywhere and whenever they want, and (3) the content offered is wider. These features could be applied to other social media as well as video and music streaming.

Statista (2014)

Finally, Millennials are significantly loyal (Schawbel, 2015), therefore, companies are encouraged to engage them, thus, due to the previous features the best way to engage them is through the social network (Schawbel, 2015). Moreover, companies must take Millennials into account in the new products creation (Schawbel, 2015).

As a consequence, it appears the necessity of hiring a good community manager to manage this social media with good communication, empathy and good writing (Presmanes, 2014).

Previous Generations

DallasNews (2014)

Millennials and previous generations face to face

In addition to this video, Millennials are more engaged, vocal, and visual, than previous generations. This means, Millennials are not merely passive readers; they post, pin, view, and blog, as well as they are willing to experiment and go onto the next innovation in social media (Donagher, 2014). Hence, the post-purchase stage is essential for companies. Millennials are highly involved with the purchase on social media, before, during and afterwards. If the purchase creates satisfaction or disappointment it will be shared on social media and it will reach more people than ever. Finally, Millennials have grown up in an era of digital media and video games as entertainment, what differs from previous generations (Parker, 2016). Thus, for example, as the passive experience of a slot machine does not resonate with them, casinos look to videogames as a draw for Millennials (Parker, 2016).

Millennials have growth in a digital era

In resume, in terms of entertainment, Millennials prefer using social media rather than talking personally, what differs with previous generations. Furthermore, another difference is that Millennials prefer watching video streaming (e.g. Netflix) rather than watching TV, or going to the cinema/theater (CinemaBlend, 2015; Nielsen, 2014). Moreover, this generation top the charts for music streaming (e.g. Spotify), as well as this generation download more music from the internet than the previous ones (Nielsen, 2014). In terms of social media, it is remarkable that Millennials prefer using Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat or Youtube rather than Facebook. Thus, although the 41% of millennials still use Facebook every day, Facebook is more popular in the previous generations (Friedman, 2016b).

Refuel Agency (2013)
Ruiz Martos (2017)

Considering all the information collected on the previous sections, and focusing on entertainment, it could be concluded that, in comparison with previous generations, Millennials spend more time on social media (Youtube, Whatsapp, Instagram, Twitter, etc.) and using the mobile devices to watch videos, post photos, chatting, etc. rather than watching TV or going to the Cinema. This fact affects their behaviour in terms of purchasing. For example, Millennials could be more influenced by Vlogs rather than TV. Thus, Millennials are about three times more likely than other generations to reference social media networks when they are making purchase decisions (Swartz, 2016), as well as, Millennials usually review Blogs before purchasing (Schawbel, 2015). These features linked to the Millennials characteristics could lead to debate about the traditional Consumer Behaviour Decision Process (Mothersbaugh and Hawkins, 2016). Therefore, in the video below there is a brief explanation of this model, as well as a Table resume.

Hogg (2007)

Once the general Decision Making Process has been described, it is important to highlight how the differences on entertainment between generations affect to this model. Thus, the main difference that is going to be considered is the use of social media and the Internet, instead of traditional media and traditional tools. In the links below there are two interesting articles coming from Youtube Insights talking about the impact of this social media on companies and customers.

At this stage, it is crucial to define the impact of the Millennials entertainment over the Decision Making Process model. Thus, in the tables below there is an example of a complete process from Millennials and from previous generations.

Millennials

Ruiz Martos (2017)

PRevious Generations

Ruiz Martos (2017)

Once the complete process has been seen for both sides, it is highly important to highlight how the Millennials features could affect this process:

(1) Making the process shorter in time: Millennials could spend less time making the decision because they could find everything they need through the internet. For example, imagine that a group of friends that are 25 years old wants to prepare a group trip, instead of going to a travel agency and look for the proper trip for them, it is as easy as watching a Vlog about the city they want to go and see it. Afterwards, they could search everything on the internet, and they will get the trip easier, quicker and cheaper.

(2) Avoiding some stages: If the Millennial is watching a video from Youtube (with entertainment purpose) and this Youtuber starts promoting a product providing his/her review, this potential consumer could avoid search for information. Imagine a beauty product in a beauty Youtube channel for example.

(3) All the stages in just one step: There are some websites which provide information about a wide range of products as well as they compare them. Thus, for example, if a Millennial watch a banner about holidays on Youtube meanwhile he/she is surfing on, this person could find information, compare alternatives and purchase the product in the same place, Booking.com (2017). Furthermore, this Millennial could type a review of the Hotel facilities and the area afterwards. Therefore, the whole decision making process could be easier, faster and in just one place, Booking.com.

Booking.com (2017)

(4) Millennials "are changing the content of each stage": Millennials are being influenced by different influencers such as social media, blogs, etc. They search information in different places, as well as their preferences in the alternatives are different. They love products social responsible and low cost (McDaniel, 2014). In addition, the purchase place is changing, the online store is gaining importance in today's world (Stevens, 2016). It appears companies such as Deliveroo or Just eat to order for food, or Amazon or AliExpress to buy a wide range of products at competitive prices. Finally, the impact of the post-purchase feedback could be higher than before.

The impact of the post-purchase has increased since Millennials feedback could reach more people through the internet, now it is not just shared with family and close friends, the feedback could be read by everybody.

Conclusion

Comparing views from TV and Youtube

As Millennials will be in the near future the greatest generation (O'Donnell, 2013), it is crucial for companies to be aware of how to interact with them. In this way, the changes in entertainment are producing changes in the Consumer Behaviour. This fact leads companies to change in many aspects.

Nowadays, it could be more interesting for companies to have a good presence on social media to be in touch with Millennials and be adapted to today's world. Social media is essential for companies, with this, companies could help potential customers to recognise a need, influence them, help them to compare alternatives and sell the products. Furthermore, social media could help with the post-purchase process because if the customer has any issue the company could help him/her. Thus, having a good community manager is essential for companies. Companies could even hire people using social media such as Linkedin, or visit the Facebook profile of the future employees to know more about them.

Scott (2015)

In resume, entertainment is changing and companies must adapt to it. The communication and promotion between companies and customers are different. The consumption of traditional media like TV is falling in next generations, they do not watch it, and if they do, they hate advertising, therefore, they are not affected at all by them (Schawbel, 2015). The Consumer Decision Making Process is starting to be modified and a good solution for companies to be adapted is using Social Media.

Antonio Ruiz Martos (University of Lincoln)

Reference List

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Reference List for the Figures

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Ruiz Martos, A. (2017) Own elaboration from the author's thoughts. Sparks videos, Images, Glideshow (Introduction and Ipad) and Figures (Consumer Behaviour Decision Making Process from Millennials and Previous Generations).

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