When it comes to marketing, millennials are a generation that should definitely not be ignored. As one of the largest generations worldwide, they are expected to overtake the baby boomers in numbers by mid-2019.
In Japan, the ‘Yutori’ (millennial) generation is considered to be those born after 1987 and before 1997 give or take. Between 2017 and 2018 alone, millennials globally were estimated to spend more than $200 billion and they are expected to spend approximately $10 trillion in their lifetimes.
Due to the difference between younger Japanese and previous generations, marketing must evolve to stay relevant to the Yutori generation.
Therefore, in Japan, and the rest of the world, the rise of millennials has prompted major growth in the digital market.
Today’s Japanese youth are a new breed
Japanese Millennials have grown up through the development of advanced telecommunication technologies and access to the internet.
Due to the onslaught of information revealing a less optimistic future, these young people have developed more realistic attitudes and placed more importance on rationality than previous generations.
A desire to have a simplistic lifestyle has become prevalent in Japan’s youth. Over 60% of high school students, university students and people in their 20’s said they want to be viewed as being frugal rather than generous with money, according to a survey by Dentsu Innovation Institute, a marketing and consumer research company.
Furthermore, living in the digital age has changed the way that youths interact with each other and the world, with almost 100% of Japanese millennials owning a smartphone.
Social media and apps like LINE, Instagram and Twitter are some of the most popular among young Japanese.
Low Price, High Quality
Youth in Japan don’t want a lavish lifestyle or a high paying job.
They don’t need cars and shun brand-name clothing.
For Japanese millennials, thrift has become a virtue. ‘’Wearing expensive brand-name clothing like Prada head-to-toe is uncool,” said Sarumaru, the 26-year-old consultant. ‘’Mixing cheap items with slightly pricier ones requires more fashion skills and is much cooler,’’ she said.
Companies that have capitalised on this trend, are ones who have successfully gained Yutori interest.
Cheap restaurant chains targeting Millennials are gaining popularity in Japan.
According to Nikkei Asian Review, major Japanese izakaya chains are recently filling up their menu with low-priced snacks. While premium, high cost restaurants are suffering, yakitori pub chain Torikizoku, which sells its food and drinks for 280 yen, grew 7.6% in the first half of 2017 against the same period in 2016.
Japanese millennials in 2018 are more loyal to trusted brands, and value quality and price competitiveness.
Japanese millennials use words such as “cospa” – short for “cost performance,” or value for money – to rate anything from cosmetics to hotels.
‘’Cospa is about durability and price,” said Tsukasa Mitsuno, a 23-year-old college senior.
Digital Marketing: The Key to Targeting Millennials
Statistics show that 96% of millennials own a smart phone, making mobile marketing a huge investment for companies wanting to target Japan’s young people.
App and social network advertising has taken its place as one of the best marketing strategies targeted at youths.
Instagram, Twitter, LINE and Facebook are among the most popular social networking and messaging apps and websites available.
Twitter and Instagram are the fastest growing social networks in Japan with Twitter boasting over 45 million (Japanese) users, and Instagram with 20 million active (Japanese) users in 2017, almost a 50 percent increase since 2015.
This ranks it as the fastest growing social network in Japan, and the momentum has continued since Japanese users rated Instagram as the most enjoyable social network in 2016, tied with LINE.
Millennials Drive Growth in the Digital Market
Since 2010 there has been a worldwide increase in social media users by almost 40%.
This has created a huge marketing opportunity for companies predominantly targeting millennials and younger people.
The rise of digital media allows companies to reach a larger audience and cut costs by having online stores.
The global reach of marketing is no longer held back by the necessity of having a physical presence, which allows freer international trade and better prices for consumers.
There has been a growth of almost 40% in online sales since 2013, which will only rise as more companies target the generation of the digital age; millennials.
Info Cubic Japan has many digital solutions for targeting millennials in Japan. Contact us today if you want to market successfully in Japan.