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Crafting the Customer Experience for People Not Like You

Who’s the Most Gung Ho About Saving for Retirement? The Answer May Surprise You

A new survey done by the Maritz corporation for Ameritrade in the 3rd quarter of 2011 has found that Gen Y is most likely to be doing all it can to save for retirement, even more so than Gen X, Boomers and Matures.

While 85% of working Americans today have an IRA or 401(k)/403(b) retirement plan, Generation Y (defined as born from 1977-1989 for study purposes) is most rigorous about saving to the best of its ability. The study found that 25% of Generation Y is funding both work sponsored plans and IRAs. That’s compared to 23% of Generation X (born from 1965 to 1976), 16% of Boomers (born from 1946 to 1964), and 9% of Matures (born from 1930 to 1945).

It’s somewhat surprising that Generation Y, known for wanting everything right now, has the foresight to see the importance of saving for something so far in the future as retirement. So what’s behind this trend?

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Occupy Protests Show Differences Between Gen X and Gen Y

While the Occupy Wall Street movement doesn’t claim to be a youth movement, you’ve probably seen the youthful faces on the news declaring themselves as part of the 99 percent. Lack of employment opportunities and concern about student loans have spurred many of Generation Y, or Millenials as they are often called, to embrace the Occupy protests. Generation Y was born between 1980 and 1995, and is known for its love of diversity, teamwork, and philanthropy.

A recent article from the Associated Press highlights how many of Generation X are reacting with confusion and rivalry at Generation Y’s involvement in the Occupy movement. Generation X was born between 1965 and 1979. They were the first real children of divorce and daycare, are individulalists and self-reliant, and are known for their skepticism of authority.

So why isn’t the Occupy movement something that both generations embrace?

Generation X also came of age during the recessions of the early 80s and 90s. Rather than stage protests, Gen X’ers just weathered the economic storm and benefited from growth later is those decades. As a result, many X’ers see the Occupy movement as a continuation of Generation Y’s sense of entitlement and whining.

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Australians Just as Hooked on Social Media as U.S.

File this one under “And You Thought Your Social Media Addiction was Bad.” A new survey found that 2.8% of Australians surveyed (64% of them men) have accessed social media during a romantic encounter. Of course, one would imagine that grabbing an iPhone to post on social media during said encounter would render it unromantic, but to each his own.

The survey, from Sydney-based marketing agency Tick Yes, surveyed 885 from all parts of Australia about their social media usage. Much of it mirrors what research is finding in the United States:

  • Facebook is the most popular social media site in Australia, visited by 85.5% of social media users
  • 25.1% use social media for business networking, with men almost twice as likely to network in this way
  • Over 20% use social media to connect with brands
  • Almost 50% use social media to talk about a new purchase
  • 25.5% have used social media to contact a company for customer service or to ask a question
  • 48.7% say their social media usage has increased in the last year

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Twitter Users Provide Feedback Regarding Black Friday Ads

Big brands used their television ads to generate excitement and enthusiasm about their Black Friday sales. Target, Macy’s, Sears, Kohl’s and Walmart all bought heavily into television to get their message out in the days preceding Black Friday. So did it work? Interestingly, experts are looking to social media, specifically Twitter, to answer that question. Kind of a ready-made focus group, Twitter users weren’t shy about voicing their opinions about the Black Friday ads.

Of course, it’s not enough to get lots of mentions on Twitter. If so, then Kohl’s would have been the winner after being matched with rival Macy’s. According to mediabistro’s All Twitter blog, Kohl’s received 99.7% of the volume of mentions on Twitter to Macy’s .3%. But the overwhelming majority of tweets regarding Kohl’s were negative feedback about their unfortunate use of YouTube singer Rebecca Black’s Friday song as a jingle.

Competitors Target and Walmart were also paired, and Walmart was the overwhelming winner in both volume and positivity of tweets. Walmart mentions were 83.7% compared to Target’s 16.3% in volume.

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