Teenagers are a fickle and notoriously hard-to-reach market segment for advertisers, but they are still one that many companies are keen to target as they enjoy shopping, tend to be easily influenced and if you catch them young, the lifetime value of the acquisition can be very high. We set out to investigate how they behave online.
We interviewed a reasonably typical, social media savvy, 14 year old girl about her social media habits and how she interacts with brands and businesses online.
Her preferred social media in order of how much she uses them are:
The places where she follows brands and businesses are:
The types of company she follows are predominantly clothes brands and shops (Hollister, Superdry, Jack Wills, New Look, Primark) followed by jewellery, make up, hair products, healthy eating and women's magazines.
She uses Twitter more for following celebrities and vloggers, although she also follows vloggers on YouTube, Facebook and Snapchat.
Interestingly, vloggers are extremely influential on her purchase habits and she has read four of their books, bought their merchandise and followed their fashion recommendations.
In terms of interaction with brands online, she likes posts but rarely comments and is not particularly influenced by special offers. She will click on links in Facebook posts if she wants to see more, but does not often click on links in Instagram, mainly because it not as immediate or easy. If she views anything on Snapchat it is more for awareness than action.
Her social media consumption is almost entirely on mobile devices, switching from phone to ipad to ipod but logging in on the computer less than once a month.
One other point for advertisers to note is that she watches very little actual TV, spending more viewing time on Netflix or YouTube than live TV.
Learning points for those of us who are over the age of 20? Live TV is in decline, vloggers are the new influencers, mobile is everything, don't ignore Instagram and you need to tap into teen's interests and make it very easy, in order to get clicks. Oh yes, and free wifi is the way to their hearts!