The First Digital Natives

Posted on May 21st, 2018 by Steve Sherfy

Millennial Disruption – A Four Part Series

Part Two

 

Millennials are the first digital-native generation, having grown up with the internet and “smart” devices.  Smartphones have the greatest penetration among Millennials, with 90 percent owning a smartphone.  In comparison, only 79 percent of Generation X own smartphones.

According to the Pew Research Center, smartphone usage among Millennials is the highest of any US demographic.  90 percent of Millennials use their phone to access social media sites, three-fourths watch digital video and almost two-thirds listen to music or podcasts.

Technology Breeds Togetherness

By the time Millennials were in elementary school almost every classroom was equipped with some form of computer, giving Millennials the advantage in the workplace as they have naturally acquired skills that older generations have had to spend time learning.

While much of Generation X worked through the effects of being a “latchkey kid”, the rise of social media has enabled Millennials to avoid isolation by reaching out digitally to their peers.  Growing up in this fashion has solidified a sense of community and group identity more than any other generation; Millennials believe in strength in numbers.  Millennials can and will quickly rally around a cause; they invented the idea of crowdfunding instead of capital investments.

Key Takeaways

  1. Community Over Capital – Millennials value support of what matters to them. 50 percent of Millennials are more willing to buy a service or product if the company supports a matter important to them.
  2. Social Activity is Important – Millennials use their online networks to assist in purchase decisions. 34 percent would choose to engage and do business with a brand based solely on their social media activity.
  3. Principles Over Price – Being cause-driven has its benefits as 37 percent of Millennials are willing to pay more for a product or service if the company supports a cause they believe in.