YouTube tops Youth 100 list, but no sign of Pot Noodle

Students make me think of Pot Noodles, cheap booze and Hollyoaks, but as the Beans Group’s inaugural list of the top 100 student brands proves, mainstream household names have taken over.

Mindi Chahal

The top five goes like this: Youtube, Wikipedia, Cadbury, Google and the BBC, which paints the picture for me of video-loving, fact-checking, news-hungry, chocolate-eating students.

Despite this image, the list is proof that most young people belong to the mainstream rather than a particular sub-sector of opinion, according to The Beans Group head of youth strategy Luke Mitchell, as the top 100 is predominantly made up of common household names.

However, when it comes to other opinions on consumer life, the youth group differs from the crowd. A report by Future Poll, the quant service at The Future Laboratory, has shown that 18 to 24 year olds rate their overall life satisfaction as high and hold different views in measure of wealth. This group also hold stronger opinions on data use, and online social media profiles.

Here is the research behind it. According to the Office for National Statistics, three-quarters of people aged 16 and over rated their overall life satisfaction at seven or higher on scale of 1 to 10.

The UK Consumer Attitudes Audit research, by Future Poll, also reveals that a fifth of Britons now see non-ownership of a smartphone as a reliable sign that you are poor, which is higher among younger age groups who are even more likely to use smartphone ownership as a measure of wealth, with 29 per cent of 18-24-year-olds and 30 per cent of 25-34-year-olds holding that belief.

When it comes to data, and this might not be surprising, young Britons in the 18-24 age group are more open to digital deal making. 44 per cent are prepared to share health details to obtain an individually tailored brand offer, compared to 38 per cent overall.

Further to this, almost half would make the same agreement over dietary data, compared to 35 per cent overall, and over a third would offer access to emotional details, compared to 24 per cent of the total population.

And lastly the youth of today are far more honest about the accuracy on online social media profile, with 57 per cent of 18-24-year-olds admitting that their own online profiles are a more appealing version of their offline selves, compared to 40 per cent overall.

So what you think of students and young people isn’t always necessarily true, although I’m convinced Pot Noodle is still a favourite, but what picture does this research paint of the youth of today?

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