NEWS6 September 2018

Brand ethics influence teen purchases

Media News Trends UK Youth

UK – Teenagers are increasingly influenced by ethical considerations when deciding which brands to buy, research from MediaCom suggests.

Teens happy crop

Over half ( 54%) of respondents aged 16 to 19 in the media agency’s ‘Connected Kids’ study claimed they had either deliberately bought or stopped using a brand because of its ethics.

The majority of teens expect brands to be ethically aware – 85% agreed with the statement ‘brands should be responsible about minimising their impact on the environment’, while 71% agreed brands have a responsibility to give back to society.

While 63% of teens said they would be more likely to buy from a brand if it supported a cause or charity that’s important to them, a third ( 37%) are sceptical of brands who claim to support good causes, and two-thirds agreed that many brands and companies overstate how much they support good causes.

Young people are also more likely to be influenced by ethics than adults, according to the study, with 57% of teenagers aged 16+ agreeing they would pay extra for a brand that supports a cause or charity important to them, compared to 49% of adults.

However, ethical considerations are still secondary for young people, with quality ( 81%) and value for money ( 80%) still the most important factors impacting purchase decisions.

Josh Krichefski, chief executive at MediaCom UK, said: “The increase in online exposure to brand news stories means teenagers are more in tune with brand behaviour than ever before. Yet brand purpose alone isn’t enough to guarantee a purchase; quality and price remain the most important aspects, but purpose can be a key differentiator when it comes to teens deciding where to buy their products.”

The study consisted of a 15-minute quantitative online survey, with fieldwork carried out between 18th December 2017 – 8th January 2018. Stats quoted here relate to the base of 400 teens aged 16+ ( 171 boys and 228 girls).