Goro Hokari
Apr 25, 2017

One size doesn't fit all among millennials

The lifestyles and values of millennials born in the 1980s and 1990s differ vastly, with the latter operating seamlessly between the real and digital worlds.

One size doesn't fit all among millennials
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While it is common to view millennials born in the 1980s and 1990s as more or less cut from the same cloth, the truth is that their lifestyles and values could scarcely be more different. The word covers too much territory to be very useful for marketers, particularly in Asia, where social changes have been profound inn recent years.

This situation prompted the Hakuhodo Institute of Life and Living (HILL) ASEAN to evaluate what makes millennials tick. In view of the significant differences it identified, this Hakuhodo Group think tank proposed labeling people born in the 1980s as Curators and those born in the 1990s as Convergenators.

Curators carefully cultivate their public persona, leveraging the Internet and social media as platforms for selectively presenting themselves in their best light. In contrast, it would not occur to Convergenators to erect barriers between the real and digital worlds. They are seamless. For instance, Convergenators are comfortable sharing what they are doing right now through Snapchat. Why wait?

Following are several noteworthy Convergenators whom HILL ASEAN encountered in its survey.

The Malaysian individual here showed us a video he posted to Snapchat of his drive that morning down the highway. I cannot understand why he would need to share such content, but that’s coming from a child of the 70s.

What makes it all worth it for this young man is that his photos or videos are conversational ice-breakers.
 
Anything from the daily routine in real time is grist for the Convergenator mill.
 
This young Indonesian has matched a virtual reality headset she recently bought with her hijab.
 
She was not making any particular point about linking modernity and tradition, she merely found the new kit affordable and interesting.
 
Buying is merely the start of the Convergenator shopping experience. This Singaporean sells purchases at his local flea market.
 
"I see little risk in shopping, as I can quickly sell something if I don't like it."
 
This Indonesian entrepreneur opened a florist shop that does business solely through Instagram.
 
Convergenators have torn down barriers between their work and private lives by making a living doing things they like.

Rather than spend time like a Curator looking for capital, he opted to plunge straight into business by finding something he could do without capital. He says that he minimizes operating risks by buying flowers only after booking orders. For him, an 80s Curator faces more risks by doing nothing until there is enough money to get started.

These individuals represent but the tip of the behavioral iceberg for Convergenator millennials. What’s really important is understanding that underpinning their seamless shifting between the real and digital worlds is a desire to be authentic—to themselves and everyone else. And this, when you think about it, is refreshingly honest.

—Goro Hokari, Institute Director, Hakuhodo Institute of Life & Living ASEAN

Click here for more on surveys and research by the Hakuhodo Institute of Life & Living ASEAN.

 

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