The Mellennials Conference in New York City reiterated the nuggets of wisdom oft repeated at technology-influenced events, but it emphasized the sensibilities of an emerging generation of consumers born between 1980 and 2000, “millennials.”
Don’t bullshit them, they’ll punish you; don’t try to control them, they’ll distrust and abandon you; engage them with useful tools and dynamic experiences, they’ll be loyal and build communities. Word-of-mouth is a formidable force, and individuality reigns supreme.
### I’m reminded that mellennials are the earliest adopters of internet-entertainment, and video is a small component of the investment in the space. Passive TV has became a default pastime because its the only entertainment experience that traditional TV can generate–and it’s what we grew up with– but the new entertainment product includes a diversity of engagement from passive sitcoms to absurdist hotels full of friends we’ve not actually met.
For the past sixty years or so, our culture has adjusted to the predominant entertainment available in our homes, and our culture is again transforming quickly; so is our media. Hollywood’s investments are shifting.
Google revolutionized the process for uncovering specific information, but text search leaves a lot to be desired for entertainment discovery. As I see it, the process of media discovery is analogous to travel; when we arrive in a new city, we select experiences–the Eiffel Tower, The Mona Lisa, Park Monceau or a street market. What would you choose right now? How would you find it? How would you text search for a tourist destination that you don’t even know exists?
When I travel, I carry Lonely Planet because it lists the best of all budgets, so whether I prefer a sandwich or caviar, I’m usually covered. I know many who prefer Lets Go for its no-frills sensibilities. Rick Steves appeals to my friend Aaron because he “doesn’t have to think,” but I feel too controlled by him. I want to be put in charge of my own destiny.
What’s my point?
Media for mellennias is changing with its delivery mechanism. Programming and filtration will become increasingly important, and as more talent gravitates towards the new entertainment medium and it’s pushed in new directions, we’ll see guides as dynamic, creative and diverse as the media they explore, and as independent as the melleninals exploring it.