New Paradigm

New Paradigm

November 08, 2006 15:29 ET

New Paradigm: Global Study Unveiled at Web 2.0 Summit Explores Ideologies, Behaviors and Psychology of "N-Gen"

New insights into key characteristics of the Net Generation and how they impact on how marketers must evolve to reach these "connected" consumers.

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA--(CCNMatthews - Nov. 8, 2006) - Findings from a compelling new global study about key characteristics of the Net Generation - known as N-Gen - and their effects on how marketers have to adapt in order to reach these new connected consumers were announced at this weeks's Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco.

"Strategic Investigation of the Net Generation," conducted by think tank New Paradigm and co-commissioned by OgilvyOne and eight other firms, examines eight norms that capture the unique ideologies, behaviour and psychology of this powerful generation. In the first phase of this global syndicated study, more than 1,750 N-Geners surveyed throughout Canada and the US shared insights into their world. The next phase will consist of interviews with N-Geners in 10 additional countries.

Early survey results have tremendous implications for both marketers and employers. Key characteristics of N-Gen include:

Freedom: While older generations often feel overwhelmed by the proliferation of sales channels, product types and brands, the N-Gen feel empowered. 83% of N-Geners know what they are going to buy before they leave the house. They are well-informed shoppers, and are confident in their decisions.

Scrutiny: Businesses targeting the N-Gen should expect and welcome intense scrutiny of products, promotional efforts and corporate practices. 60% of N-Geners research product information including features and price before they buy.

Relationship/Collaboration: Boomers grew up passively watching television but the N-Gen media diet is much more "interactive" and "relationship" oriented. N-Geners are looking for a two-way relationship with brands. 68% want companies to give them a means to help with product and service development and improvement.

Entertainment: This is a generation that has been bred on interactive experiences and leading-edge companies recognize that there is more to consumer relationships than brand recognition. 74% agree that having fun while using a product is just as important as the product doing what it is supposed to do.

Integrity: N-Geners want company values align with their own, and when deciding what to buy and where to work, they look for corporate integrity and openness. 77% say that if a company makes untrue promises in their advertising, they will tell their friends not to buy the company's products. 71% say that if a company makes a mistake, they will continue to buy from them as long as the company corrects the mistake honestly and quickly.

"We're on the verge of a marketing revolution. Will companies be ready?" asked Don Tapscott, chief executive of New Paradigm, Toronto, who has spent 10 years studying the rise of the Net Generation, defined as the first wave of youth to have grown up with the Internet. In his groundbreaking work Growing Up Digital, published in 1998, Tapscott describes how N-Geners are technologically savvy, collaborative and hold significant influence over their Boomer parents.

Brian Fetherstonhaugh, chairman & CEO of OgilvyOne Worldwide, who has partnered with New Paradigm on the research, observed, "By studying the Net Generation we see that many of marketing's fundamental tenets must change. This new generation of consumers is leading marketers into the digital revolution."

For more information about the study, please contact Joan Bigham at New Paradigm, 860-536-6693, jrbigham@newparadigm.com.

Press contact: Bill Gillies, PR for New Paradigm, (905) 829-4683, bill@gillies.com

About Don Tapscott and New Paradigm

Don Tapscott, one of the world's leading authorities on business strategy, is Chief Executive of the international think tank New Paradigm, founded in 1993. New Paradigm produces groundbreaking research focused on the role of technology in productivity, business design, effectiveness and competitiveness.

Tapscott is also an internationally sought authority, consultant and speaker on business strategy and organizational transformation. His clients include top executives of many of the world's largest corporations and government leaders from many countries. The Washington Technology Report says he is one of the most influential media authorities since Marshall McLuhan. He is also an Adjunct Professor of Management, Joseph L. Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto.

Tapscott has authored or co-authored ten widely read books on the application of technology in business. His upcoming book, co-authored with Anthony Williams, is WIKINOMICS: Promise and Peril in the Age of Collaboration (Portfolio, December 2006).

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