Millennials will share information

12 March 2014
CHICAGO: In a further sign of the ease with which young Americans have adapted to new technology, a new survey has found that 60% of US millennials are willing to share their personal information with marketers.

The Marketing to Millennials report from Mintel, the market research company, also revealed that almost one-third (30%) who claimed they would not share the most private of information went on to say they would do so if they received an incentive offer, such as a coupon.

This was in stark contrast to the Baby Boomer generation, of whom only 13% said they could be persuaded to share private information in return for incentives.

Millennials' willingness to share was reflected in other areas too – they were twice as likely as Baby Boomers to share their mobile phone numbers (30% and 14% respectively) and almost three times more likely to share social media profiles (27% versus 10%).

Furthermore, millennials were twice as likely to share credit scores (17% versus 8% of Baby Boombers), although these rates were low for both generations.

Mintel's report, which built on findings from two previous studies it published over the past couple of years, defines millennials as being aged 20 to 37, accounting for almost one quarter of the US population.

Baby Boomers were identified as those Americans nearing, or who have passed, the traditional retirement age, who account for a similar proportion of the population.

"What this shows is that the younger generation, who grew up in the Information Age, is clearly more comfortable with sharing those types of personal information and are far less sceptical than their parents," said Fiona O'Donnell, category manager at Mintel.

"Millennials are predisposed to share their personal habits and contact information with marketers, but they do so only when the perceived benefits outweigh the risks," she advised. "The implications for businesses are tremendous, because as millennials go, so goes the US economy."

Data sourced from Mintel; additional content by Warc staff
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