Yahoo!, OMD: Global Youth Get Music Fix On Web
Internet companies that have invested heavily in music--including America Online, Yahoo!, and Intermix's MySpace--should be happy to learn that "music is possibly the single greatest mechanism by which youth facilitate their three needs," according to the report, which specifies those needs as community, self-expression, and personalization.
The study, "Truly, Madly, Deeply Engaged: Global Youth, Media and Technology," based on research conducted earlier this summer, found a remarkable degree of multitasking among today's youth. Globally, the generation dubbed "My Media" by OMD and Yahoo! finds itself faced with more tasks than time to accomplish them on a daily basis, and as a result, has become highly adept at multitasking and "media meshing."
"A key finding from this study is that members of the My Media generation can fit up to 44 hours of activities in just one day," said Mike Hess, director of global research and communication insights at OMD Worldwide.
According to the study, on average, the global My Media generation performs approximately three to four other tasks while surfing the Internet, and approximately two to three other tasks while watching television.
But how do these young consumers process all the information they take in?
While those answers are still not entirely clear, this research should begin to unlock such mysteries, according to Michele Madansky, vice president of research at Yahoo!
"This is why we're working so closely with OMD," said Madansky. "While the youth we tested are performing up to three tasks simultaneously, allowing them to increase their consumption of all types of media during their average waking hours, it is still not clear how they are processing all that media."
What may be more troubling for Yahoo! and OMD is the decreased degree of receptivity among young people in the U.S. to advertising in newer forms of media like mobile phones and even Web sites online--another finding of the study. Specifically, while 60 percent of U.S. respondents believed it was okay to find ads on TV and 65 percent accepted advertising in magazines, only 36 percent were okay with ads online, and a mere 9 percent consented to mobile advertising.
OMD's Hess, however, saw opportunity in such numbers. "We know these are new forms of media that consumers consider their own and completely customizable, but I'm sure more testing and understanding will resolve this misunderstanding," he said. "We're going into a new era in which we'll need a lot more modeling, and the first marketers to recognize and address these issues are going to benefit greatly."
The study also found that although young people are increasingly turning to the Internet for content and services, they are still active users of TV, radio, magazines, and even newspapers.
"TV serves as a mechanism for escape and entertainment," said Madansky, "and magazines seem to be the medium of choice for things like fashion."