While demographers agree that the
Baby Boom encompasses everyone born in
the United States between 1946 and 1964,
they are not as consistent when it comes
to delineating the three generations born
since then—Generation X, millennials (Gen
Y) and Gen Z. Taking our cue from the
Pew Research Center, the nonpartisan fact
tank and subsidiary of the nonprofit Pew
Charitable Trusts, Selling Halloween will
define these generations as follows:
Generation X: born between 1965
and 1980; aged 37 to 52 in 2017
Millennials: born between 1981 and
1998; aged 19 to 36 in 2017
Gen Z: born between 1999 and
the present; aged birth to 18 in 2017
So, if people aged 18 to 34 represent
over 40% of adult Halloween celebrators,
the millennials are definitely the top target
demographic for this industry at this
time. Gen Z, which includes all of today’s
children, represented 22.9% of the U.S.
population in 2015 (the last year available)
or 73.6 million kids and babies. We don’t
know the exact portion of this group that
is involved in Halloween, but we know it is
large and growing.
HALLOWEEN PRACTICES AND
PREFERENCES VARY ACROSS
Where is Halloween most popular? You
probably won’t be surprised to learn that
the West leads the Northeast, Midwest
and South regions when it comes to the
percentage of adults participating in
SHARE OF HALLOWEEN
CELEBRATORS BY AGE GROUP
Source: Selling Halloween estimates
FIVE FACTS ABOUT MILLENNIALS
5 They don’t believe everything they read. Only 10% of younger millennials—
Pew Research broke out U.S. adults aged 18-29 in its 2016 study on the modern news
consumer—“trust the information from the national media a lot,” and, no surprise, they
most often get their news from websites and apps (34%) or social networking sites (32%).
4 Millennials are much more likely than the general population to have cut the in-home telephone cord. The 2015 GfK MRI “Survey of the American Consumer” found that
44% of U.S. adults lived in mobile-phone-only households, but 64% of millennials relied
exclusively on mobile phones.
3 Millennials are more racially and ethnically diverse than older generations.
Twenty-seven percent of Asian Americans, 26% of African Americans and 26% of Latinos
are millennials, according to the Pew Research Center. Latinos make up 21% of all U.S.
millennials, and millennial Latinos are less likely to be foreign-born and more likely than
older generations to speak English proficiently or to be of Mexican origin.
2 When making purchasing decisions, millennials are less influenced by subject-matter experts than people in other generations. Millennials are more likely to rely
on friends and family for advice. In a 2013 survey of more than 2,500 U.S. adults, The
Boston Consulting Group (bcg) found that less than half of millennials, but 61% of non-millennials, expressed trust in traditional experts, while 59% of millennials said they were
influenced by friends, as compared to less than half of non-millennials. Millennials also
pointed to spouses and partners (52%) and parents (51%) as key influencers. Millennials
are also twice as likely as Gen-Xers and four times more likely than baby boomers to say
they are influenced by celebrities, according to bcg.
1 Millennials are the largest living generation. In April 2016, the Pew Research Center
announced that the 75.4 million millennials, a group still growing with the arrival of
immigrants, had overtaken the 74.9 million baby boomers, whose numbers are becoming
depleted by deaths, to become the predominant generation in the country.
FIVE FACTS ABOUT GENERATION Z
5 Gen Z is more concerned about human rights issues and racial inequality than
other generations, according to a survey by Vision Critical.
4 Even though most of Gen Z is not yet working full time, this cohort is already
expressing an interest in entrepreneurship, with 70% of teens creating freelance gigs to
make money. Forty-two percent of teens surveyed by Sparks & Honey said they plan to
work for themselves as adults.
3 Gen Z is pragmatic, having been raised after the attacks of 9/11/2001 shattered the
country’s sense of invincibility and the Great Recession eroded the economic security of
many of their families. They are more optimistic about their own futures but less confident
about the environment, the U.S. economy and the world economy than other generations,
according to Vision Critical research.
2 Gen Z is even more diverse than the millennial generation. Forty-seven percent
of Gen Z is Hispanic (23%), African-American (14%), Asian (5%) or multiracial (5%),
meaning that they identify with two or more races.
1 Gen Z is on track to become the largest generation. Although there is no agreement
yet on exactly when the millennial generation ends and Gen Z begins, 3 million more
babies were born in the United States in the 16-year period between 1998 and 2014 than
in the 16 years from 1981 and 1997. Although immigrants, who are more likely to be
working age than to be children, have bulked up the millennial ranks, there is no reason to
think Gen Z will be any smaller than the millennial generation in the long run.