This email is definitely reaching the midlife-crisis demo. No doubt about it.

I try hard to make sure these weekly missives don’t come off as marketing shtick. You get enough of that everywhere. Being ‘a vendor’ sucks. But it sucks worse for you.

That said, I do think about the insights we uncover and whether they’ll tickle your commercial fancy. Maybe you’ll forward something to your team and they’ll say “hmm, I wonder if they can help us with blah, blah, blah.” Some of our best clients came to us that way.

And then there are other times, way more times actually when all of you high-brow VIPs respond in droves to the most frivolous things, like weed, Taylor Swift, or chicken wings. The smartest, most powerful people in the world, it turns out, are not immune to click-bait.

But nothing – and I mean nothing – moves the needle-like anything that has anything to do with midlife-crises. Last week, I shared our report about cosmetic surgery, in which a Millennial writer said Gen Xers are all losing it. It was the most clicked-on article – by a mile – since I began publishing this thing. Last month, I wrote about my 20th college reunion, age, and happiness; my inbox was flooded with stories of people wishing they could turn back time.

And two weeks ago, we wrote about vanity plates, where I painted the image of a balding middle-aged man cruising around in his convertible Porsche. What did I get in response? This gem, from a well-known, C-suite exec at a very famous company – a woman, for the record, whom I’ve never met in person:

“Driving a Porsche is about appreciation of perfection, not midlife crisis.  Unless you don’t get a manual, then you are just a &%^$#@ having a midlife crisis.”

I wish I didn’t have to censor that word. It made it 100 times funnier.

But, those are our readers – and your peers. And me. Not having a midlife crisis at all… 🙂

Here’s what we’re seeing this week:

If investor confidence was a ski slope right now, it would be a double black diamond. We released our Investor Sentiment Index for April this week and it wasn’t pretty. This was the third consecutive declining month and the lowest point we’ve seen since we began publishing the index a year ago. Volatility in the financial markets, U.S./China trade talks, and other geopolitical concerns seem to be dragging investors down. Hopefully all of the better-than-expected company earnings over the past few weeks will reverse the trend in May.

This whole Fortnite phenomenon is even bigger than my 14-year-old said it was – and she blows everything out of proportion. A friend of mine last weekend told me he waits every night until his kids go to bed and plays Fortnite until 2, sometimes 3 in the morning. Another friend in the same conversation sheepishly admitted the same. I had no clue. Research we did with the folks at BTIG found that 21% of Fortnite players didn’t even play video games previously. The thing is an absolute juggernaut. No thanks. I have enough obsessions.
I can’t think of another brand we track that has been on a run like Domino’s over the past two years. The chart below kind of speaks for itself. What we found when we dug a little deeper is that it’s not just Millennials and Gen Z warming up to Domino’s. They’ve been winning over more discerning foodies and technophiles across the generational spectrum.

Millennials are drinking less coffee, at least until they become parents. Daily coffee consumption has been on the consistent rise since we began studying it way back in 2012. But as we reported this week, consumption among Millennials is significantly lower than younger generations – with energy drinks emerging as a popular substitute. Looking at things another way, however, this turns out to be much more of a “life-stage” phenomenon than a generational one. The turning point appears to be parenthood. 44% of Millennial parents are drinking coffee every day, still slightly below the U.S average, but not by much. To anyone who has kids, this correlation makes complete sense.

Yes, Target and Walmart shoppers are as different as you think they are. On just about every dimension you can think of.

Putting ice in your wine is definitely not a generational thing. It’s a gender thing. And a regional thing. And a how-much-wine-you-drink thing. Overall,about 25% of wine drinkers think it’s cool (see what I just did there) to drop a few ice cubes in their chardonnay. I wouldn’t say I love it. But if you’re waiting for the bottle to chill, what choice do you really have?

Your Random (Motherly) Stats of the Week
  • 39% of U.S. adults talk to their mom every day
  • 65% of people hear from their mom most often by phone, 23% by text, 3% by email
  • 41% of people say mom is the boss of the house, 20% say dad
  • 34% of people spend Mother’s Day with their mom, 29% send a present or flowers, 18% call her on the phone, 1% do a video call, 7% do something else, 10% do nothing.

Happy Mother’s Day to the moms out there.

Don’t be in the 10%.