SOURCE: AK Tweens

AK Tweens

February 18, 2009 09:36 ET

New Survey Shows Difficult Economic Times Taking Toll on Tweens Too

New Survey From Leading Tween Research Company, AK Tweens, and AllyKatzz.com Reveals Allowance Is Down and Savings Are Up

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - February 18, 2009) - A new "Tweens and Allowance" survey released today by leading tween research, consulting and marketing company, AK Tweens, shows the trickle-down effects of the current economic downturn have reached even the youngest marketing demographic.

The survey, conducted by AK Tweens, through AllyKatzz.com, the country's largest and only COPPA compliant, safe social networking site exclusively for tween girls, surveyed AllyKatzz.com members, ages 8-15, from around the country on issues related to tween allowance, tween spending and family spending.

Most notably, results show a 16% decrease in the number of tweens who receive an allowance from their parents, as compared to 2008. Of those who continue to receive an allowance, more than half -- 59% -- plan to save some or all of their allowance for a rainy day, a 13% increase from 2008 when only 46% planned to save some of their allowance.

Additionally, what they plan to spend their allowance on has also changed -- not insignificant when you consider that there are 28.5 million tweens in the US today who independently spend $51 billion annually and have considerable "sway" over another $170 billion spent on them by parents and family. In 2008, tweens planned to save for clothes, the future and iPods, in that order. Now, the future is what they plan on saving for the most, followed by clothes, and cell phones taking the place of iPods in the third slot.

Unlike teens, tweens are too young to get jobs and make their own money so they remain dependant on their parents, who are feeling the crunch as well. In fact, 63% of tweens surveyed said their parents have cut back on overall spending since this time last year, with family travel (50%), 'fun foods' like snacks and sodas (48%) and clothes/shoes (46%) taking the biggest hits.

What does this mean to retailers? As Denise Restauri, AK Tweens Founder and CEO, and the country's foremost marketing expert on tweenage girls, says, "We will see tweens learn the value of money for the first time, and because they will need to strategize how they want to spend it, they will develop into a generation of conservative spenders and smart comparison shoppers. Their loyalty will lie in the brand/retailer that gives them the biggest bang for their buck."

ABOUT AK TWEENS

AK Tweens is the leading consulting, research and marketing company that captures the thoughts and opinions of tweenage girls and is built around the country's largest and only COPPA compliant tween social networking site, AllyKatzz.com. AK Tweens is able to translate their thoughts and opinions from "tweenage chatter" into valuable feedback for companies seeking a more meaningful and beneficial relationship with the tween girl market. Clients include Disney Records, Universal Music, Hollywood Records, Red by Marc Ecko, XS Games, Girl Scouts of the USA, Harper Collins and Sony Pictures, among others. AK Tweens Founder and CEO, Denise Restauri, is the country's foremost expert on tweenage girls and is a frequent commentator on national television, newspapers, magazines and radio programs including CBS Early Show, The Today Show, ABC, NPR, E!Online, USA Today, People Magazine and More Magazine.

ABOUT ALLYKATZZ.COM

AllyKatzz.com has 75,000 tween girl members and is the country's largest and only COPPA compliant tween social networking site designed to engage tween girls. Tweenage girls visit AllyKatzz.com monthly to share uncensored information about what's going on in their worlds: opinions, ideas, dreams, people, places, products and trends. Our more than four million annual posts and profiles let girls share with each other what's going on in the world -- from boys to brands -- and everything in between.

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