'Busy' is the new 'grand' for Irish millennials


Irish millennials present a highly filtered version of their lives on Instagram, with only 2% saying their profiles reflects their "true self."

In contrast, two-thirds say that the more candid Snapchat reflects their real life, while the corresponding figure for Facebook is only 15%.

That's according to a report from youth marketing agency Thinkhouse, which has been busy surveying thousands of Irish people between 16-35 on their attitudes towards work, life, and the internet.

58% of Irish millennials want to work in a job that "gives back to society," while half seek job opportunities with companies whose "values match their own." These concerns rank ahead of job status (30%), and even pay (27%).

The Thinkhouse report adds that "busy" is the new "grand" in Irish society. 91% of respondents said that they live busy lives, which was due to a mix of both social and professional commitments.

89% said that they live happy lives, but this figure is somewhat counteracted by the 87% who also described their lives as stressful.


This group's focus is set on intermediate, rather than long-term goals. 41% profess to save none of their paycheck, while 25% put aside less than €50 per month. Thinkhouse adds that companies need to recognise and understand this shift in mindset and the growth of "emerging adulthood" as a life stage.

When it comes to the all-pervasive power of social media, young Irish people spend most of their time on Facebook, but post more to Instagram. 60% said they have removed content from social media because they found it embarrassing.

Six out of 10 have been on a date with someone who they met on a dating app or website, while 20% went on to form a relationship with partners who they met online.

While they might be digital natives, all the internet exposure can be too much for this generation too, with 86% of those who took part in the study saying they take time off from being online - although this figure drops for younger respondents. The report highlights the podcast-boom as an example of users' mixed urges to disconnect and to constantly seek information and stimulation.

When it comes to spending, purchases are only ever a few taps away. The study shows that social media advertising is the best way to connect with young consumers, who rank these networks above online news, and well ahead of advertising with traditional media.

It adds that there is a "social underground" where "conversations and brand recommendations" are taking place. Noting that brands need to get involved in these conversations, they believe that tailoring their approaches to each social platform is the best path to take in order to avoid looking like "the awkward dad at the disco."

The report concludes: "Future-proofing is about being relevant and desirable today and into tomorrow. This means recognising 16-35-year-olds for who they really are as individuals.

"It requires creativity, re-invention, mission, personality and passion, because ultimately these are values that young people not only embody, but crave in the brands they engage with."

Joseph Conroy, Newstalk.com 

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