Sat | Nov 17, 2018

Think tank to explore economic importance of millennials

Published:Monday | October 22, 2018 | 12:00 AM
Kimala Bennett, CEO and founder, The LAB

For many Jamaicans, it is hard to understand 'the young people nowadays'.

Generation gaps are nothing new, however. As technology evolves, the gaps between older persons and younger generations ( Y and Z) seem even wider than ever before and continue to widen.

One marketing firm, however, is making an effort to gain a better understanding and bridge that gap.

Citing a lack of culturally relevant statistics, The LAB, a fully integrated marketing agency, has commissioned a wide-reaching study on the behaviour values and motivations of Jamaican millennials through sister company Bluedot Data Intelligence.

Key insights from the study will be shared with some 200 decision makers at the inaugural LAB Think Tank to be held on October 24 at the Spanish Court Hotel.

"With more than 50 per cent of Jamaicans being age thirty and below, neglecting our younger audiences puts the future of your business at serious risk," CEO and founder of The LAB Kimala Bennett said, explaining the reason for the event.

As a millennial-run agency in its 10th year of operation, The LAB has built a strong reputation for guiding corporate brands towards younger audiences. Recent campaigns such as NCB Keycard, Digicel Set fi di Summah, and Grace Flairy Mackerel, featuring Ding Dong and the Ravers, have received significant uptake with that demographic.

"Connecting with generations Y and Z requires openness," said Bennett.

"Jamaica has evolved exponentially through technology, and millennials fuel this change."

She explained that the idea that teen audiences are either an enigma or not spending is the core of what will be explored by the think tank.

The advertising executive said that benchmark brands such as Sony, Dell, and Proctor and Gamble have invested heavily in growing with their audiences. To help find a solution, The LAB Think Tank will feature millennial research expert Tina Wells, who has worked with Sony, Dell and Proctor and Gamble.

 

NEEDED DISCUSSION

 

"Her unique expertise, supported by the experiences and cases studies from Jamaican marketers, will frame a much-needed discussion on how to move forward."

Randy Rowe, chief strategist at The LAB, cites Nike as an example of millennial conversion through advertising.

"Nike has invested heavily in understanding millennial motivations and using the understanding of these trends to guide their marketing and product offers. Some weeks ago, this was proven when Nike stocks rose to record highs due greatly to the public reaction to their recently launched Colin Kaepernick campaign."

Rowe said that having millennial input and a strong, well-suited strategy to drive the discussion is integral to future business success.

The think tank will feature panels of leading business executives complemented by social-media influencers, entertainers and trendsetters such as Ding Dong, Naomi Cowan, and Kamal Bankay to ensure frank and dynamic dialogue, along with a multi-faceted set of speakers.

"Understanding this market is integral to understanding the future," Rowe continued. "Influencers are deadly serious business when you understand their power. Kendall Jenner hammered a nail in Snapchat's coffin with a tweet. The standard of our consumers, especially the younger consumers has shifted upwards. Jamaican companies will need to rapidly adapt to maintain their relevance. If we don't connect with them, you best believe that other brands will," he said.

The LAB Think Tank will take place on Wednesday, October 24, at the Spanish Court Hotel, Valencia. Persons may register online at www.TheLabThinkTank.com.