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Black Friday’s Anti-Aging Secret

November 30, 2012 Leave a comment

Shopping on Black Friday made me feel old this year.

Not because we actually began shopping on Thursday. Not because I’ve been scouting out the doorbusters, deep discounts, and special sales for close to 20 years. But because the general make-up of the bargain hunting crowds really seemed to shift this year. After heading out at 8PM on Thanksgiving, it seemed like we were met by a sea of tweens and teens. Before I knew it, my friend and I were muttering phrases like “Where are your parents?” and “Don’t you have a curfew?”

The progressively earlier store openings for the “Black Friday” bonanza of shopping has apparently lent itself to a whole new group of shoppers. Instead of the traditional early birds setting their alarms clocks for 3AM Friday and trudging to the stores half asleep, younger night owls are increasingly appearing, hopped up on coffee and seemingly eager to do “something” after Thanksgiving dinner. While the Black Friday Weekend* insights released by the National Retail Federation (conducted by BIGinsight™) don’t include the tweenagers with which we shared the stores this year, it’s still interesting to take a look at some of shopper shifts among the 18+ age groups that we’re witnessing with the age-old Black Friday shopping tradition.

Younger Crowds Own the Thanksgiving Shopping Trend. Among Black Friday Weekend shoppers who checked out the deals on Thanksgiving Day (in-store or online), the percentage of 18-34 year olds increased a whopping 30% over a year ago. That compares to just an 8% rise among those 35 to 54 and 9% with the 55 and over crowd. So, while we know that shopping on Turkey Day is a rising trend, it’s clearly one driven by a younger demographic.

Merry Christmas to Me. Yes Virginia – this is the season of giving – but with doorbuster deals like $8 dollar coffee pots, who can resist the one-for-you, one-for-me mantra? Practical consumers are increasingly embracing the idea of “self-gifting” at the holidays, buying items for themselves at discounts typically not seen throughout the rest of the year. And these self-centric Santas were certainly out en masse last weekend: eight out of ten Black Friday Weekend shoppers reported that they had taken advantage of retailers’ online and in-store promotions to buy non-gift items. This figure rose to 86% among 18 to 34 year olds, while those 35 to 54 (81%) and 55+ (72%) showed more restraint [well, kind of].

18-34 Year Olds Found Deals via Friendlier Outlets. There’s something that screams “tradition” to a Black Friday bargain hunter when that 20 pound newspaper – chock full of those delicious retailer ads – lands on the front porch on Thanksgiving morning…am I right? Surprising as it may seem in the digital age, the majority of consumers (50%) looked to advertising circulars as their source for Black Friday Weekend sales, discounts, and promotions this year, followed by retailer emails (36%), online searches (30%), retailers’ websites (23%), and TV advertising (also 23%).

Talk to an 18 to 34 year old, though, and you’ll get a different picture. While these youngsters still gobbled up the deals via ad circulars (39%), they were nearly twice as likely to find a friendly discount via Facebook (31%) compared to the general Black Friday Weekend shopping population (16%). Additionally, 18 to 34 year olds were more likely to learn about promotions directly from family and friends (30%), eclipsing those who sought out TV advertising (26%).

Where did you look for information on Black Friday Weekend sales, discounts, and promotions this year?

* “Black Friday Weekend” is defined as Thursday (Thanksgiving), Friday (Black Friday), Saturday, and Sunday.

For more insights on the holiday season, visit the NRF’s Holiday Headquarters.

This post originally appeared on Forbes.com as a contribution to the Prosper Now blog.

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Surprising Insights: American Pulse

As some of you may know, we’ve been releasing these really handy tools called InsightCenters, perfect for serving up answers in an intuitive, interactive and illustrative way. You can find insights on a wide range of topics – mobile device ownership, Hispanic consumers, new vehicle purchasers, government unemployment stats, and even the economy of China—all at the click of a mouse or the tap of a touch screen!

At the moment I have a domestic focus, and have been exploring our American Pulse InsightCenter, which takes a look at how Americans feel about the upcoming election, the economy, technology, and much more!

In just a few minutes, I was able to easily gather these fun facts:

  • Members of Generation Y are more likely than older generations to say they are addicted to the Internet and Facebook.
    • More Boomers than younger Americans say they are addicted to TV.
  • Men are more likely than women to be happier with the work life, and both genders’ happiness levels in the workplace are higher in 2012 than they were in 2011.
    • Women, however, are more likely than men to be happy or totally happy with their love lives.
  • In July, Hispanics were more likely than Whites and Blacks to thoroughly enjoy their lives rather than worrying about making money.
  • Members of Generation Y are more confident that the government’s economic policies will help lower unemployment, and their confidence is growing.
  • Neither Presidential candidate has a positive Net Promoter Score* among Likely Voters.
    • Obama, however, receives a higher score among Democrats than Romney does among Republicans.

Take a look for yourself and see what you can learn about the pulse of America: the people! And for the people, did I mention access to this InsightCenter is totally free? 🙂  (Just click the image to access the online version or download to your Android tablet!)

Source: BIGinsight.com

© 2012, Prosper®

*About the Net Promoter Score (NPS): Respondents were asked to rate, on a scale from 0 (Not at all likely) to 10 (Extremely likely), the probability they would recommend each presidential candidate to a friend or colleague. 10 and 9 responses indicate Promoters, 8 and 7 responses are Passives and 0 through 6 are Detractors. NPS is calculated by subtracting the percentage of Detractors from the percentage of Promoters.

Net Promoter, NPS and Net Promoter Score are trademarks of Satmetrix Systems, Inc., Bain & Company, and Fred Reichheld

Generation Gap: Webaholics Anonymous

Hi. My name is Randi and I am a Webaholic (along with nearly half of the American population!). According to the American Pulse™ Survey from March, 47.5% of Adults 18+ admit that they are addicted to the Internet. The World Wide Web is also the top tech addiction among all generations:

While TV is the #2 digital drug of choice among all Americans, members of Gen Y and Gen X seem more hooked on Facebook. Perhaps keeping up with friends and bartering farm animals is more addicting than tuning in to the boob tube for younger Americans.

Like many of my Gen Yers (although I hate to admit it) I am also addicted to Facebook and my smartphone. However, I can’t whole-heartedly agree with the 33.0% addicted to TV (unless you count reruns of Law & Order SVU on Netflix!). I actually cancelled my cable service a year ago and now rely on Wii streaming and DVDs via snail mail.

Similarly, if they had to choose, the vast majority of Americans (83.0%) would cut the cable and fasten to Wi-Fi. This intention spans across all generations; however, a few more members of the Silent Generation would opt to keep their cable:

Regardless of age, Internet appears to be a necessity. It’s also the more practical option—you can always watch TV episodes online!

Source: American Pulse™ Survey, MAR-12 #1, N = 3892

© 2012, Prosper®

BIGinsight™ is a trademark of Prosper Business Development.

Generation Gap: Tracking Holiday Sales & Promotions

December 8, 2011 1 comment

In case you missed it, the National Retail Federation recently released inaugural data on how shoppers plan to track holiday sales and promotions this season; BIG collected this data as part of our November Consumer Intentions & Actions® survey. Among holiday shoppers in general, it’s traditional forms of media (print ads, TV, even email) that grab the most attention:

Top 5 Media for Tracking Retailers’ Holiday Ads & Promotions (Adults 18+)
1. Advertising Circulars (50.5%)
2. Emails from Retailers (32.3%)
3. TV Advertising (31.7%)
4. Retailers’ Websites (23.7%)
5. Coupon Websites (i.e. RetailMeNot.com, FatWallet.com, etc.) (23.1%)

This data becomes really interesting, though, when we break it out by generation:

Silent (born 1945 or earlier)
Boomers (born 1946 – 1964)
Gen X (born 1965 – 1982)
Gen Y (born 1983 – 1993)

Ad Circulars

Ad Circulars are relatively less important to Gen Y-ers. (click to enlarge)

Advertising Circulars are the top media among all generations, except for those Gen Y-ers. Among these youngsters, Coupon Websites (35.0%) are the most sought-out, followed by Ad Circulars (33.5%), TV Advertising (33.1%), Facebook (32.3%), and Emails from Retailers (31.4%).

As you may expect, Ad Circulars are the most popular among the Silent generation (56.8%) as well as Boomers (58.1%). These two generations also place Direct Mail in the their top five lists.

The importance of social media grows as generations decrease in age. As previously mentioned, Facebook (32.3%) is a top five ad source among Gen Y; additionally, about one in four (24.7%) Gen X-ers socially engage this site for holiday promotions. Far fewer Silents (3.4%) or Boomers (8.9%) are doing the same.

Facebook

Gen X and Y are more likely to gravitate to Facebook than their older counterparts. (click to enlarge)

Among the younger generations, blogs are more popular as well. About one in ten of those in Gen X (10.6%) and Gen Y (12.1%) admits to scanning blogs for access to holiday deals, while this method is much less likely to be employed by Boomers or Silents.

It doesn’t appear that holiday shoppers are giving too much attention to Twitter this year. While many may be tweeting about the purchases they make or the deals that they scored, this was among the least popular venues for consumers to find holiday sales and promotions. Just 6.0% of Gen Y-ers rely on Twitter, and this percentage drops precipitously with age.

Blogs

Blogs prove more popular with younger generations. (click to enlarge)

One of the media newcomers, Group Buying Websites (i.e. Groupon, LivingSocial), is gaining fans with the younger generations. Among both Gen X and Gen Y, about 15% are intrigued by the mega deals offered through these venues. About one in ten Boomers are buying in, while just 5.3% of the Silents are tempted.

Besides the fact that younger generations prove to be more receptive to newer forms of media, this data really tells us that retailers need to know who their customers are in order to reach them in the most effective manner this holiday season…BIGinsight consumer data, anyone?

Couponing Websites

Couponing Websites - Favored by Gen Y (click to enlarge)

For more information on this data, please contact BIGinsight™.

Source: Consumer Intentions & Actions® Survey – NOV-11 (N = 8502, 11/1 – 11/8/11)

© 2011, Prosper®

BIGinsight™ is a trademark of Prosper Business Development Corp.

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