Questions Reveal Much About Favorite Brands

What do you learn when a couple of hundred thousand teenagers ask you questions every month? A lot. Some things are predictable because of external events so at ChaCha we get lots of kids asking, "What are symptoms of swine flu?" and "What are the lyrics of 'Hey Stephen' by Taylor Swift?" and "What are some good low-calorie snacks?"

Because they are teens, some questions tend to be asked over and over again like: "How long does it take to know that you're pregnant?," "Can you get Xbox live on an Xbox360 by hooking it up to your computer?" and "What is the best way to get your parents to buy you something?"

Recently, Frost & Sullivan approached us saying, "The teen segment relies on their mobile devices for a wide range of communication, information and entertainment requirements, and the youth segment forms the core of the mobile operators' mobile data strategies. As such, services that generate millions of mobile search queries from the youth segment every month are ideal to provide insights into things on the 'top of the mind' of the youth segment and build a virtual 'user-profile' that ties all known information about the end-users."

And it is true. In addition to lifestyle questions we are also asked millions of questions about very specific things that teens intend to buy, things as everyday as soda, shoes and jeans and as high-end as laptops, smartphones and cars. Let's take a top-line look at some of the data we collect in the process of receiving and answering questions (and follow-up questions) from teens.

Here are some of the highlights from more than 1,200,000 questions relating to apparel brands and 125,000 relating specifically to jeans.

Girls are asking all the questions
Unlike many other industries, apparel -- specifically jean brand -- questions come from predominantly females, at 83%.

True Religion jeans are the leading brand among 18-24 year olds
62% True Religion; 20% Lucky Brand; 11% 7 for All Mankind; 7% Citizens for Humanity

7 for All Mankind is gaining traction with 13-17 year olds
True Religion has highest awareness (55%) vs. 22% Lucky Brand; 17% 7 for All Mankind; 4% Citizens for Humanity; 2% Chip and Pepper.

Purchase intent is high for True Religion jeans
But 62% don't know where to buy the product or think it is too expensive. They ask questions like:

"Where can I buy True Religion jeans in Cincinnati, Ohio?"

"Where can I get cheap True Religion jeans?"

Brand affinity is high for True Religion jeans
Nearly half (48%) ask beyond-the-basics questions like:

"Who created True Religion jeans?"

"Where did the design for True Religion jeans come from?"

We have answered more than 300 million questions from teens and young adults. It's fascinating to know what they think and what they care about, long before a brand sees the results in store or in trend reports. We know what they like, what's popular and what's not and what they intend to buy. And what is even more fascinating is that they have no problem sharing that information.

This is the "public generation," and they want their intentions known. What a remarkable opportunity for marketers to learn how to best leverage what teens and young adults share.

Tags: apparel, teens
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3 comments about "Questions Reveal Much About Favorite Brands ".
  1. paul myers , November 19, 2009 at 2:15 p.m.

    Sounds to me like True Religion are soon to found almost everywhere and at greatly reduced prices considering they garner that much interest from this specific demo.

    As brands, especially fashion, become that popular, they soon fall out of style because everyone has them.

  2. Howie Goldfarb from Blue Star Strategic Marketing , November 22, 2009 at 8:55 p.m.

    I am not shocked at the data but I am shocked the teens can afford the various jeans in your study. Does that mean the ChaCha demographic for teens sending in questions tends to be upper-middle class and above? Because that is a stellar demographic to have access to, congrats! And I wonder how those brands are doing in the current economic environment.

  3. Zach Linder , December 4, 2009 at 4:02 p.m.

    Thanks for the comment, Howie. I don’t think the results point to what teens can afford as much as what they would like to have, as the question posed was more in-line with a ‘Wish List’ context. What it does prove is that analyzing questions and comments from ChaCha users is incredibly valuable to brands, both for those that are desired and those that want to be desired by teens, by providing a real-time pulse of what is ‘hot’ with the teen market.