Teens are the ‘Household Decision Makers’, Finds TotallyAwesome Research

Teens have become the most important consumers in Australian families and are bringing with them opportunities for brands to form lifetime connections, according to new research from TotallyAwesome, a global forum for kids, teens, families and brands to safely interact across the internet.

TotallyAwesome’s Zoomers Digital Insights research covered 700 respondents in Australia aged from 4 to 18 years, with parental involvement. Now in its sixth year, this year’s study reveals that kids and teens have become the ultimate family influencers when it comes to household purchases across a wide range of categories.

Teens decide what food their household eats (78%), where they holiday (71%), where they eat out and what food delivery they get (80%), through to what toiletries and personal care products are purchased for everyone (68%), to name a few.

The report highlights that a brand’s engagement strategy must reach beyond parents if it is going to be successful. Brands must embrace the notion that it’s the teens of the household that  significant say in everything, from what goes into the shopping cart to where the family travels. It’s business-critical for marketing’s short-term acquisition strategy and longer term retention strategy.

According to the findings, it’s also here that brand loyalty starts. If a brand doesn’t win this influential teens audience now, they’ll lose them forever.

They are also the new ‘Mindful Generation’ with research reinforcing how young people are particularly receptive to purpose-driven ads that convey a message about important societal issues and believe brands should be a force for good, instead of focusing on just selling their products and services.

TotallyAwesome, ANZ, Managing Director, James Sawyer, said “The teenage years are a world of firsts and bonds formed early on will help brands build affinity well into adulthood. Teens experience their first banking brand and are making independent financial decisions about their future, they start their first job, their first date, they start considering their first automotive brands and are making independent choices in technology.”

This new generation has become very cautious and this new mood, which has been impacted by COVID, has only occurred in the past two years with the data revealing that banking money is their third largest ‘spend’ category, up 30% from 2020. Teens’ top two spend categories are snacks and drinks, while fourth is eating out and fifth is clothes and footwear.

Sawyer added: “We also know that on average Aussie teens earn $137 in monthly pocket money and 34% of this group also have a part time job where they earn an extra $260 a month. With limited financial obligations, they have the money to purchase the products they want.

“Aussie kids and teens want to interact with brands that have their best interests in mind and make them feel better about themselves and the future as we progress through the COVID-19 pandemic.”

TotallyAwesome, Head of Research and Insights, Alice Almeida, said: “On top of becoming financially independent, we also noticed that teens’ concerns about COVID-19 increased 27% since January 2021, while their concerns around mental health increased a staggering 36% in the same period. In addition, they are caring more about racism, animal cruelty and climate change. They are a generation that cares and stands up for what they believe in”.

Source: Mumbrella