People aged 18-34 are 37 per cent more likely to engage with social media, a study of 2,000 adults found, whilst 34 per cent are far more swayed by online video adverts than traditional advertising.
For those aged 35 and over however, nearly half of the respondents said they were most likely to buy from a TV advertisement – demonstrating a striking contrast in consumption habits between the generations.
Where print advertising did resonate with younger consumers was in the transport hubs, with more than a quarter (27%) aged 25-34 saying they would probably buy from a sign they liked on public transport.
Other print advertising mediums – billboards and posters – are less persuasive to younger people, who tend to favour targeted ads on social media. Although when compared, it did emerge that billboards (24%) were slightly more effective at getting under-34s to engage than posters (22%).
The study, commissioned by Adzooma, also found that social media was the overall preferred medium for the younger generation. Findings highlighted that 43 per cent of under-34s were more likely to buy from a sponsored social ad than any other social media targeting medium, nearly twice as much as those who said they would engage with a billboard or poster.
Rob Wass, co-Founder & CEO of Adzooma commented: “There are so many contributing factors that drive our purchasing behaviour and decision-making process. However, it’s interesting to discover that there is still a big generational gap when it comes to advertising mediums and the way various ages engage with these methods.
“Understandably, under-25s are a completely different advertising market from all other age groups, for the simple reason that they are the only generation to have grown up with social media. We saw the same with the growth in TV consumption and TV advertising after sets entered UK homes in the ‘60s. Much in the same way, it’s on advertisers now to adapt to these shifting audience habits.”
Interestingly, 18-24s were not the age group most likely to buy from social influencer endorsements, with young professionals (25-34) the key demographic responding to influencer marketing. Unsurprisingly, those aged 55 and over were unmoved by social influencers, with just 5% saying they would consider purchasing off the back of this type of marketing.
When asked whether they were more likely to buy from an ad with a social influencer or a celebrity, the study also revealed that all respondents excluding 35-44s and 55+ said social influencers.
Those in the youngest age bracket (18-24) were skewed most heavily towards choosing a social influencer over a celebrity to guide their purchases (28% vs 23%).
While TV ads reign supreme for those in their late 30s, 40s and early 50s, findings suggest that these age groups still engage highly with social media ads – although they are slightly pickier than other demographics about which social ads they choose. For instance, it emerged from the study that respondents in these age groups were less likely to buy from a sponsored ad (33%), preferring more ‘organic’ means, such as product placement in a social post (31%), instead.
David Sharpe, co-founder and Director at Adzooma said: “It’s fair to say that the pandemic has resulted in all generations moving towards a more digital focussed way of life, be that for work or personal reasons.
“Given that people are spending far more time at home now, many of us as a consequence are interacting online more than ever before. That’s one of the reasons why we recently made Adzooma, our online advertising platform, completely free of charge, to make online advertising more accessible and help those predominantly offline businesses make the smooth transition online.
“It’s also interesting to see what truly resonates with people across the ages, and how this can help marketing service professionals and businesses to attract their key target audience.
“Our new Adzooma Marketplace was built with that in mind, to connect the right businesses to the right marketing service providers, ensuring they find what’s right for them to stand a better chance of advertising success.”