Boomer vs Millennial: Who is more likely to attend?

Suburban male boomers are only interested in sports and family-oriented activities. That may sound like a stereotype, but there’s more truth to it than you may think.

Each year Field Day conducts a study of nearly 2,000 Southern Ontario adults to determine the events, attractions and destinations that they attend. There are clear patterns in the data, not only in which attractions are attended by different demographic segments, but also the variety and number of attractions attended.

 We call it the “Culture Bubble”: the entertainment and cultural activities that different demographic segments either embrace and reject, and why they make those choices.

25-34 year old Millennials are most likely to attend the greatest number of events each year. The chart below shows the number of different events and attractions attended in 2015 by each age group.

The number declines when adults are in their 40s and 50s, when they are focused more on their children’s interests than their own. There is an increase in the number of events attended as adults reach their 60s, an age when they are looking for new hobbies and activities to both fill their free time and stimulate their minds.

Millennials also embrace a wider variety of events and destinations than older demographics. The variety is clear in this list of attractions most likely to be attended by 25-34 year old urban females. They attend sports, cultural events, festivals, concerts, and other attractions that are progressive, lively, socially engaging and larger than life. They are least likely to attend attractions that could be viewed as conservative and staid. For example, they are highly likely to attend a Toronto Raptors game, but highly unlikely to attend Toronto Argonauts football or Rogers Cup tennis.

While GenXers and Millennials attend the most events and attractions, the downside is that they are more fickle and less likely to be repeat attendees than older demographics. Events and attractions are like fashion: they’ll try something on to see how it fits. If it doesn’t look good on them, they’ll quickly move on.

Meanwhile, 45-54 year old suburban males have the narrowest interest range of any demographic. They attend fewer events and attractions, and a narrower variety. They are primarily interested in sports events, music concerts and family-oriented activities, and they are least likely to attend cultural activities such as museums, art galleries, opera, theatre and the symphony.

Marketers are all trying to get the greatest return on their spend, so it makes sense to invest those dollars in segments that are most likely to respond favourably. Understanding the Culture Bubble can help you to determine your most viable target audiences… and potentially identify new growth segments.

Andrew Arntfield, President, Field Day Inc.

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