Lifelounge Urban Market Report 2010

For the past seven years, Lifelounge’s Urban Market Research (UMR) in conjunction with Sweeney Research, have been compiling the definitive guide on the lifestyles, interests and passions of 16 to 30 year old Australians.

The research seeks to encapsulate the values, behaviours and attitudes of the young adult market segment, focusing on the core interest areas of music, sport, fashion, entertainment and travel. It also evaluates how communication, finance, sex, health and society influence behaviour.

Released today, the UMR reveals:

  • Music is no longer the major defining factor for young adults
  • Surf brands no longer reign
  • Email is on the decline
  • Brands that deliver “street cred” is no longer enough, people are looking for “supercharged consumer sovereignty”
  • Pause and absorb time – is prized as much as the capacity to multitask
  • When it comes to brands, it’s nuance over noise
  • A new level of authenticity, what they are calling “authenticiti-me” is emerging – where trend setters can adopt a brand and add their own expression of individuality to it

There are some nice statistics and insights in the report:

  • Mobile phone ownership is close to universal with only 2% of the youth market saying they don’t have a mobile
  • Only 24% of the 16-30s downloaded music illegally in the last four weeks
  • 20% of 16-30 year olds spent over $100 on their most recent pair of jeans

And there’s plenty more. For me, the report validates observation. But many of the insights extend beyond the age focus of demographic research. I have always believed that the “youth” category describes a state of mind. Read the report in that light and you will gain a fantastic insight into the behavioural characteristics of a great swathe of the population.

But for those interested in the youth market in particular, it provides valuable insight to the trends and behaviours that are not just emerging – but which have become prevalent. Take a look at the Lifelounge website for more details.

Comments

  1. Gav,
    * The report states that music is no longer a defining factor but further down states that “Music is used as a barometer of style: Their playlists define them”. Surely regardless of what position music and friends hold on the ‘list’ they’re both important. And I don’t believe this is something unique to young people.
    * Email has been on the decline for the past few years. This is hardly breaking news. However, the decline of email use for peer-to-peer communication, shouldn’t be a green light for brands to ditch it in favour of SM and text messaging. The fact remains that in most instances, brands are not view as our ‘friends’. And preferred communication channels for friends are not necessarily welcome for brands.
    * Brands that deliver “street cred” is no longer enough, people are looking for “supercharged consumer sovereignty” -seriously??
    * Pause and absorb time – is prized as much as the capacity to multitask. This is spot on. The best point Lifelounge have made in the report. However, I completely disagree with their follow-up statement. “The challenge then for marketers is to get their brands into a “pause and absorb”. No. It’s an escape for a reason. Brands might score some karma points for creating a “pause and absorb” experience for their consumers. But try and make it more than that at your own peril.
    * Interuptive marketing has been dead for a long time. I’m sure you’d agree.
    * Anthentici-me: In a word…lame. Sorry it’s late and I’ve run out of energy to explain myself.
    I’ve posted 9 ways Lifelounge can improve the report here (http://pitythecool.com/?p=611). Would be interested in your thoughts.

  2. Thanks Andy. As you point out in your post, there are plenty of ways in which the report summary could be improved. However, I presume they are targeting marketers who will appreciate the segmentation (and yes, even the terminology) and be interested in the observations presented – perhaps enough to either purchase the research in full or engage the agency. As such, in raising more questions than they answer, Lifelounge/Sweeney may have created the perfect hook ;)

  3. I’m sure there are marketers who who will appreciate the report. My point is actually that it raises old ‘questions’.
    It was communicated to me that I what we received was the full report. And if the goal was to hook marketers into paying for more information/services they haven’t done a very good job of that either: where is the link to purchase the full report? Why is the only obvious contact person for “media enquiries” from the PR agency.
    I’m surprised that you haven’t challenged the report yourself :)

  4. I reckon Andy is pretty much spot on.
    The difficult thing for me with the report, is broadness of its demographic.
    You just cannot compare a 16 year old and someone who has just turned 30.
    I gave my copy of the report to a hip young thing in my creative dept. She will be putting her thoughts onto her blog.
    I suspect that will make for an interesting read.

  5. Thanks guys. Appreciate everyone’s interest in the UMR.
    It’s our 7th release of the annual study, and as such we are constantly evolving the product and will take your comments on board.
    Agree that for marketers, the link for further information or to purchase should be made more prominent on the UMR INFO website and we have now included a direct email from the subscribe section http://lifeloungeumr.sweeneyonline.com.au/Contact.aspx.
    For further information, interested parties can either contact Cassie at Sweeney Research or subscribe via the website. Secure login details to the UMR will be provided upon subscribing.
    Stan Lee, regarding your comment on the demographics of the study, we do segment the audience to avoid it being such a broad group. Segments are 16-17, 18-19, 20-24 & 25-30. A breakdown of the various trends and stats per age segment is available in the full report. What we sent to you for interest was the exec summary, which is a snapshot of key observations, but in the full report there is much more detail and analysis.
    Again, just wanted to say thanks for raising these points. We always welcome discussion on the UMR.

  6. @Andy + @Stan – I long ago gave up on telling people how to do a better job.
    I published some of the report’s executive summary because I thought it was interesting. I added the website link myself (after searching for it) because I expected people would be interested in following it through. The fact that there was no obvious link for pricing, for purchase or for contact while frustrating is all too common. Hopefully the Lifelounge folks will think this through next time – and maybe they’ll also provide more detail or full reports.

  7. Very useful blog and well written. I definitely think that this will help me a lot. I appreciate all your work. Thank you.

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