Asian millennials are shaping markets and expanding their cultural influence across national and continental borders – an example of the digital youth theme that is one of Admap’s Drivers of Change in 2019.

Kunal Sinha, executive director at Kantar Advisory, lists some of the manifestations of Asian millennials’ influence – from K-pop to Bollywood – and what these could mean for marketers in the coming year.

Gangnam Style thrust Korean pop into the global mainstream in 2012, since then “K-pop” has matured into a $5bn industry, enabled by the streaming revolution.

“K-pop brings together technology, aesthetics and entertainment,” says Sinha and a side-effect is how it has enabled South Korean brands like skincare brand Innisfree to enter into markets like India.

In a movement in the opposite direction, Indian cinema has resonated with Chinese audiences, and especially with millennials.

For example, Dangal, a movie in which a wrestler pushes his daughter to first take up and then excel in the sport of wrestling, broke records when it was released in China.

“The story reflected parallels in both societies: the status of women, a bias towards the male child, the growing ambition of village folk, and the importance of filial piety,” Sinha notes.

This cultural mirroring effect has been successfully repeated in other films, laying the way, he suggests, for Indian consumer brands to finally make inroads into China “with millennials willing to embrace novel experiences and products”.

Other trends being driven by Asian millennials include wellness – 45% of millennials in India believe that leading a healthy lifestyle is essential and 36% have a fitness app on their phones – and sustainable fashion.

Research suggests that 65% of consumers in emerging markets are actively interested in sustainable fashion – more than twice the number in mature markets.

“The growing appeal of flea markets – such as in Jakarta and Lil’Flea in Mumbai – as retail outlets for slow fashion labels such as Semilir, can be attributed to a large number of young consumers who will complement their Zara pantsuit with a handmade shawl,” says Sinha.

This issue of Admap features 14 articles by thought leaders from across the globe. WARC subscribers can also access a deck which summarises the key thinking and advice from all the authors. 

Sourced from Admap