Adapt Your Brand Positioning and Retail Strategy to Win America’s Teen Shoppers

American Teens make many independent decisions when shopping for apparel, personal care, skincare, or makeup.
Reading Time: 3 minutes

April 10, 2023
Lauren Goldberg– Analyst

They also eagerly influence family decisions around food and restaurant choices. Tap into the power of social media influencers, customer reviews, and online retail channels to reach these young, diverse consumers. To seal the deal, position your brand at the intersection of their desire for creative self-expression and aspirations for a more sustainable lifestyle.

Read on and fill out the form for an excerpt from our
American Teens: Shopping, Food, and Restaurants presentation.

American Teens - 2023 Deck Example

Collage Group’s 2022 Teens Study provides insights into American Teens’ shopping preferences, choice drivers, and preferred platforms for gathering information. This report dives into their decision-making power and priorities in several product categories, including apparel, footwear, personal care, skincare, and beauty. In addition, we explore what drives their food and restaurant behaviors and preferences.

Below are the key insights and action steps from the full study. Download the attached presentations for detailed data and insights.

Key Finding #1: Despite their relative youth, teens are making many personal purchase decisions. They do extensive research before purchase: referencing multiple sources, including customer reviews and influencer recommendations.

Millennials are the single largest American generation and are poised to be for decades to come. As they have achieved demographic dominance, some major shifts have been at play – today, Millennials make up the majority of parents to kids under 18.

In-Store Browsing Informs Teen Purchasing Decisions

Context: Teens highly value their individuality and creativity in curating their looks to reflect their personalities. This is especially true for Black and Asian teens who express their personalities through elaborate and intentional style choices.

Action Steps:

    • Offer a variety of unique items to inspire teens to experiment with their style and express their individuality.
    • Provide comprehensive information and assistance — in-store and online — to help teens navigate the purchase process.
    • Utilize guided selling tools and user-generated content to create more personalized recommendations.

Key Finding #2: Many teens are concerned about the environmental impact of fast fashion. Asian teens are especially committed to minimizing their personal impact.

A quarter of teens are concerned about environmental issues tied with fashion

Context: This game-changing cohort is expecting brands to do more: from activism to diversity and inclusion. And these young shoppers’ environmental concerns drive their concerns around fast fashion, especially among Asian teens.

Action Step:

    • Demonstrate your brand’s efforts to reduce its impact on the environment (e.g., circular fashion, resale, recycling).

Key Finding #3: Appearance is key to many teens’ confidence and self-expression. Many maintain an elaborate skincare routine, which is especially true among Asian teens.

Many teens have skincare in mind

Context: Teens’ strong emphasis on how they look is also driven by the pressure they feel to keep up their appearance for fear of judgment. How they look bears on their day-to-day confidence. Skincare and beauty regimens are of particular importance to many Asian teens who, from an early age, have internalized cultural expectations and lessons in beauty.

Action Step:

    • Highlight teens’ style preferences and help them meet their skincare goals but be careful not to fuel insecurities.

Contact us at the form below to learn more about how you can drive authenticity and engagement among diverse consumers with access to our Cultural Intelligence Platform.

Other Generational Research Articles and Insights from Collage Group

Lauren Goldberg

Lauren Goldberg

Lauren is an Analyst on Collage Group’s Cultural Insights team. She recently graduated from University of Michigan, where she studied psychology and entrepreneurship. In her spare time, Lauren enjoys trying new restaurants in the DC metro area and keeping up with the Washington Capitals.

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