by: Dick Stroud
You are going to see this statement appearing in lots of articles and reports: “Eighteen-to 26-year-old Gen Yers are integrating technology into their daily lives at a faster rate than any other generation, according to Forrester Research”.
This is a large survey by Forrester (North American Consumer Technology Adoption Study) that evaluates technology adoption and its impact on consumer behavior, attitudes, and services.
The press release states that:
Gen Yers spend 12.2 hours online every week – 28% longer than 27- to 40-year-old Gen Xers and almost twice as long as 51- to 61-year-old Older Boomers. Since 27 – 61 year olds spend an inordinate amount of their working life gazing at a PC it is no shock that they don’t want to spend that much of their social time doing the same thing.
Gen Yers are also much more likely to engage in Social Computing activities while online. For example, they are 50% more likely than Gen Xers to send instant messages, twice as likely to read blogs, and three times as likely to use social networking sites like MySpace. So what does this prove/illustrate?
The trouble with “generation wide” statements about technology uptake is that it is next to useless to marketers. Within the 50-plus age group there are groups/segments that have a 3-4 times higher rate of Internet use than the average. Most of the time it is this type of person that marketers are targeting.