Judging by the huge number of Out-of-Office replies last Saturday, I’m guessing most of you are either on vacation or just returning. I hope it was awesome, wherever you were.
Quick side note: I’m scheduling a murderer’s row of business travel for the fall – Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Minneapolis, Orlando, Atlanta, and multiple trips to New York are on the books. I’d love to meet up in person if you’re in any of those fine cities. Let me know.
Here are a few interesting things we are seeing right now:
There are fascinating changes afoot in the composition of U.S. sports fans. It’s well-documented that overall sports fandom is in decline, particularly among Millennials and Gen Xers, who have too many other entertainment choices. But what really caught my attention in some recent data we published was how dramatically the political profile of sports fans has changed in the past 18 months. Before 2016, Republicans made up the largest share of U.S. sports followers. Today, Democrats have taken a commanding lead. Claims of liberally-biased reporting by ESPN, National Anthem protests, and other factors do seem to be driving Republicans away from sports and bringing more Democrats on board.
On that note…
The current socio-political landscape is shuffling the deck in almost every industry we study. We use an algorithm in our analysis to find questions and answers in our database that correlate with or predict other questions and answers. For example, the brand of deodorant someone wears is most easily predicted by first knowing their gender. Historically, demographics – age, race, income, residential area, etc. – rise to the top of strongest correlations when it comes to consumer behavior.
More and more, however, political ideology is trumping (yes, I just did that) everything else. We saw that in our sports research above. We see it in the changing audience of Starbucks customers or predicting whether someone is looking to switch banks. What this says is that we are increasingly more associated with others based on our attitudes and beliefs than by our age, skin color, or sex. If this trend continues, it may be the most profound shift I’ve seen in my 6+ years of studying this stuff – and perhaps of my entire lifetime.
Back to the mundane…
Millennials are definitely ditching Snapchat for Instagram. There’s been a lot of speculation about this since Instagram launched its competitive “Stories” feature last year, followed soon after by soft numbers being reported by Snapchat. Well, conjecture no more. Over the past quarter, we’ve seen a noticeable 2% rise in Millennials who say they used to Snapchat but don’t anymore. And we’ve seen an identical 2% rise in Instagram usage among this group over the same period.
Netflix should survive Disney’s departure. We did a bunch of same-day research on the news that Disney was pulling its content from Netflix in favor of its own streaming service by 2019. Only about 15% of current Netflix customers said they would consider leaving the service if and when that happens. These were mostly women, parents, and grandparents, who probably rely on Disney, Pixar, and Netflix to keep their kids occupied (like I did). In media and technology years, 2019 is a million years from now. So, consider these numbers just a baseline.
Some Random Movie Stats of the Week
• 24% of Americans consider Arnold Schwarzenegger the greatest action star of the 80s, followed by Bruce Willis (23%), Sly Stallone (17%), and Chuck Norris (14%)
• 17% of people consider Father of the Bride the best wedding movie all time, followed by My Big Fat Greek Wedding (13%), Wedding Crashers (13%) and Bridesmaids (9%)
• 28% of people consider Pulp Fiction Quentin Tarantino’s best movie, almost 3X that of the next movie(s) Kill Bill 1&2 (10%).
Somehow 38% of people have never seen a Tarantino movie. If you’re in that 38%, I have a good idea of how you should spend the rest of your weekend.
Hoping you’re well.