Millennials are contrarians, but restaurant industry can't ignore them
LOS ANGELES, September 18, 2013
(Off The Menu)
– I can’t help but laugh at what they call the “millennial” generation. They take themselves so seriously, but half the time they don’t realize how contradictory their statements are when compared with their actions.
They love brands like Apple but hate anything that’s “too corporate.” They love communicating via Facebook but put down communicating via email, not even connecting the idea that one would never have existed without the other. And they praise themselves for being up to date on the latest news of the day, all the while watching “The Daily Show” as their primary news source.
I’ve come to the conclusion that people 28 and younger are absolutely clueless (I’m 34, by the way).
Millennials may be contrarians, but they can’t be ignored by the U.S. restaurant industry because they make up too big a portion of the customer base. According to a new survey by advertising agency BBDO Atlanta, 64% of U.S. millennials eat out at least once a week, and while 48% identified themselves as "foodies," 44% of those respondents said they eat fast food between one and four times a week, with McDonald's and Subway the most frequented quick-service locations.
Apparently, a Big Mac passes as gourmet for the nation’s younger generation.
What the data shows us is this: Millennials say one thing and do another. So forget what they say, just focus on what they do. Knowing millennials, they’ll probably slam you for offering something that they’ll end up buying anyway. That’s just how that generation is.
Let millennials take themselves too seriously. So long as they buy what you’re selling, let them believe that their smartphones are non-corporate.
Nevin Barich is the Food and Beverage Analyst for Industry Intelligence. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Industry Intelligence will be hosting an exclusive and free i2live webinar entitled: "Marketing to Millennials" on December 4 at 11 a.m. PT/ 2 p.m. ET. Registration here
Related News: this box contains exclusive content that is accessible only to Industry Intelligence subscribers. Click a link to learn more.
- US restaurant same-sales growth falls 1.3% in November, the ninth consecutive month of negative such sales and the worst sales growth since July, according to report; same-store traffic growth down 3% this year as of November
- US restaurant industry sees 1% year-over-year decline in traffic in Q3, hindered by squeezed consumer wallets, rising costs of dining out, and changing needs and wants, says NPD Group
- South Korea's restaurant industry is suffering from worsening business conditions due to market saturation and a prolonged economic slowdown, government data shows
- Turnover at restaurants, cafes and bars in Russia in October fall 5% year-over-year to 120.6B rubles, compared to a 3.7% drop in September, the steepest one-month drop since Q1, according to government data
- More ethnic cuisine, innovative coffees and increased engagement with Generation Z consumers will be among the top five food and restaurant trends in Canada in 2017, Technomic says