Trend Report – The New Teen Marketing Gurus

Tweens are becoming the new go-to source for how to market and sell to adults.

It seems our very children are the ones advertisers are seeking out on how to sell us our fancy new “toys”, whether it’s a sleek aerodynamic Detroit built monolith, or a Smartphone.

One industry that’s definitely become prevalent in teens marketing to adults is the fashion industry.  Your teen cousin stuck in small town Missouri might actually know more about the new Balenciaga line then you do, mostly due to immediate access to information from websites and social media platforms.  As we talked about last week, Tavi Gevinson the 15-year-old fashion wunderkind who started the fashion blog The Style Rookie, and now its more lifestyle focused off-shoot Rookie, has become just as important a fixture in the fashion community as the critics who were sitting front row at Galliano’s Saint Martins graduate collection.

In fact, some people even think her opinion is more important.  Last week in her column for V magazine Lady Gaga wrote a mildly scathing critique of New York Times Fashion Editor Cathy Horyn while simultaneously proclaiming Tavi’s “well-written blog is the future of journalism”.  Lady Gaga, who has literally sampled every avant garde designer / collection in the entire canon, feels that someone not even in high school yet has more to teach the world about fashion then someone who’s been professionally writing about it for twenty-five years.  Although Horyn did criticize Versace’s excitement over dressing Gaga, which may be partially the reason Gaga was slightly perturbed, it still goes to show that professional experience doesn’t always equal an astute aesthetic lens.

Even Ralph Lauren is getting in on the kids marketing to adults platform.  This week he staged a fashion show at his Madison Avenue office for his 2011 girls collection and invited the daughters of fashion editors and socialites to model his wares.  It was a definitely a clever move on his part to incorporate the actual kin of the local tastemakers to become part of the promotion instead of simply inviting them to a step and repeat like every other designer on earth.

It goes to show that maybe this generation of “Millennials” can actually teach advertisers how to market to their own parents vs. the old model of trying to sway the whim of whomever holds the checkbook / smart phone.  It definitely makes sense; tweens and teens are more tech savvy, more aware of their own culture and how it’s being to sold to them or their parents, and more brand conscious and aware of even the slightest new product development or aesthetic tweak.  Maybe the next generation of Madison Avenue execs will be recruited straight out of high school instead of interning with an MBA under their belts.

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