About INgene blog : First ever Indian Youth trend Insights blog

About INgene : First ever Indian Youth trend Insights blog:
This blog explores the detailed characteristics of Young-India and explains the finer & crucial differences they have with their global peers. The blog also establishes the theory of “adopted differentiation” (Copyright Kaustav SG,2007) and how the Indian & Inglodian youth are using this as a tool to differentiate themselves from the “aam aadmi” (mass population of India) to establish their new found identity.

The term youth refers to persons who are no longer children and not yet adults. Used colloquially, however the term generally refers to a broader, more ambiguous field of reference- from the physically adolescent to those in their late twenties.
Though superficially the youth all over the world exhibits similar [degree of] attitude, [traits of] interests & [deliverance of] opinion but a detailed observation reveals the finer differential characteristics which are crucial and often ignored while targeting this group as a valued consumer base. India is one of the youngest countries in the world with 60% of its population less then 24 years of age and is charted as the most prospective destination for the retail investment in the A. T. Kearney’s Global Retail Opportunity Report, 2007. With the first ever non-socialistic generation’s thriving aspiration & new found money power combined with steadily growing GDP, bubbling IT industry and increasing list of confident young entrepreneurs, the scenario appears very lucrative for the global and local retailers to target the “Youngisthan” (young-India). But, the secret remains in the understanding of the finer AIOs of this generation. The Indian youth segment roughly estimates close to 250million (between the ages of fifteen and twenty-five) and can be broadly divided (socio-psychologically) into three categories: the Bharatiyas, the Indians & the Inglodians (copyright Kaustav SG 2008). The Bharatiyas estimating 67% of the young population lives in the rural (R1, R2 to R4 SEC) areas with least influence of globalization, high traditional values. They are least economically privileged, most family oriented Bollywood influenced generation. The Indians constitute 31.5% (A, B,C, D & E SEC) and have moderate global influence. They are well aware of the global trends but rooted to the Indian family values, customs and ethos. The Inglodians are basically the creamy layers (A1,A SEC) and marginal (1.5% or roughly three million) in number though they are strongly growing (70% growth rate). Inglodians are affluent and consume most of the trendy & luxury items. They are internet savvy & the believers of global-village (a place where there is no difference between east & west, developing & developed countries etc.), highly influenced by the western music, food, fashion & culture yet Indian at heart.

Friday, July 15, 2011

The “we” factor of generation Y and the need of “involvement”

In the book “how cool brands stay hot-Branding to Generation Y” Joeri Van Den Bergh and Mattias Behrer(2011) mentioned that there is an ancient saying that bears much truth: ‘people resemble their times more than they resemble their parents’. More than half of the world’s population is under the age of 30. Gen Y (those born between 1980 and 1996) is currently one of the largest demographic groups and will soon outnumber the Baby Boomers generation. Unlike previous generation, this youth generation has been bombard with commercial messages from their birth. However, they have learned to filter out all those loud messages and they have been empowered by their parents and teachers to have an opinion of their own and never merely believe whatever somebody is proclaiming. To survive in the current, cluttered and fragmented environment, today’s teens and adolescents use collective peer wisdom and social connections. Youngsters pick and mix individual parts of media to create their own personalized products and services that fit their individual needs. The Dell and Nike website gives freedom to their consumers to pick and mix the products to create their own computers or shoes.

This Gen Y is a generation of “givers” and ready to contribute to the “we” factor than remaining as “I”. There are an increasing number of forums, sites, movie uploading sites like youtube and torrents (ie. Piratebay) which offer free advices, do-it-yourself demos, movies and having enormous content of valuable material for “free use” which shows statics that though they are as competitive, commercial and ambitious as any other generation in history but they are abandoning the prevailing ethos of their parent’s generation of baby boomers and adhering more to the values of their grandparents, the war generation. In a 2006 USA Today poll, 61 percent of thirteen to twenty five year old felt personally responsible for making difference in the world; 81 percent have volunteered in the past year; 69 percent consider a company’s social and environmental commitment when deciding where to shop; and 83 percent trusted a company more if it was socially/ environmentally responsible.

In his lecture, Thomas W. Malone of MIT mentioned parallels between the emergence of democracies in political and business worlds, and technological advances in communications. He notes that in the age of the Internet, businesses are growing decentralized, markedly departing from “command and control” organizational models to newer environments where “workers seek advice instead of approval.” Empowered by new technologies, workers will exercise ever greater strength in important decisions -- even while corporations expand and sprawl across borders.

Unfortunately, India is still following the Top Down model and this model wont work in current scenario where collaborative initiatives are the only way to sustain in a new digitally democratic world.

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