True or False – I have a 9-year-old daughter who has no clue what I do for a living.
That would be true. Despite basically living and breathing SoapBox for the past 4 years, she listens very little to what is actually going on. She has gathered (through osmosis I suppose) that SoapBox is a company. She knows the staff, loves to come to the office and even has her own name plate on an office door. She has no interest in what SoapBox actually does. She will likely never, ever, ever sign up for a Market Research panel in her life. Even if I bribed her. Even if she knows the owner.
True or False – My daughter is only 9, therefore what she does, has no relevance or impact on my business.
False. I have recently come to understand that this bundle of sassiness, is like a golden ticket to the inner world of the next generation. Instead of ignoring what she is doing and suggesting she go play outside until the street lights come on and or let her know she can quench any thirst from the garden hose, I now know that it is time to pay attention – close attention to her world. The world of online video content consumption, the world of overnight adoption of phenomena (Pokemon anyone?), the world of learning about brands and products via video being streamed (in some cases live) from some kid’s bedroom. Online crowds are like a herd of zombies changing direction on a whim.
True or False – Kids waste too much time on social media apps and they are just distracting kids from what they should be focusing on, and therefore have no relevance or impact.
Could. Not. Be. More. False. As a Market Researcher, I read article after article about how to attract and engage with Gen Y and Millennials. As researchers, we seem to have a natural tendency to analyze and assess from afar. Let’s all KEEP trying to figure out how to email these consumers an invitation to a market research survey – it’s not going to work (more on that in Part 3).
Instead, let’s try to immerse ourselves in the culture and learn how to adopt to their world instead of trying to bribe them to adopt to our world. I hear savvy researchers throwing around “fancy” terms like social listening and text analytics, yet we are still missing the big picture. Things are moving FAST and as researchers, we just keep trying to catch up. We need to be part of the movement and not just trying to understand the movement once it has happened. While you are sitting around trying to figure that out, a new “movement” has already taken flight.
True or False – Facebook wiping out MySpace was just a fluke. social media apps don’t usually take over the world at that magnitude.
False. Granted Facebook has 1.65 billion active monthly users. But there are apps, albeit on a smaller scale, gaining popularity in very, very short time spans. Music.ly started in October of 2014 and is currently at 60 million users overall. Oh, and one 15-year old girl, has 10.3 million fans. Snapchat, once fondly known as the sexting app was created in April of 2011. By October 2012, there were 10 million users and by May 2015, 100 million users. This tool is a way for Gen Y and Millennials to actually communicate with each other.
YouNow wasn’t even talked about much at last year’s VidCon event. This year, it launched unknown artists into stardom (and even has pretty crappy playback) and 100 million user sessions per month. Periscope launched in 2015, was then acquired by Twitter and now has 10 million registered accounts and 1.9 daily active users. I am sure someone will want to argue my stats – maybe they are off a bit or have different sources citing different numbers. Point being, my guess is many of you did not even know of these things.
Let’s all start to pay attention. Instead of judging and reminiscing about the good old days, we need to be hyper aware of the present. I literally can’t get enough. I am addicted to learning more, much in the same way my daughter MUST post 10 new Music.lys in a single day. I can’t wait for VidCon 2017. Oh, and did you know there is also Beautycon and TwitchCon and VidSummit and VloggerFair. You know where to find me…