According to Teenage Research Unlimited (TRU), teens spent $172 billion in 2001. In fact, the average young consumer spent $104 per week last year. Marketers hoping to reach teens would do well to learn what interests this group of independent, experimental and materialistic consumers. The pastimes of 12-17-year-olds, one of the fastest-growing population segments in the U.S., include watching the tube and surfing the net. The lists below provide some insight.
This story first appeared in the September 26, 2002 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Tuning in to the top 10 teen tv shows
2002 Video Music Awards, MTV
The 12-17 set tuned in to watch Eminem and Pink walk away with the top awards on Aug. 29.
American Idol, Fox
Teens helped turn a show about over-emoters and hams no one had ever heard of into an unqualified hit.
The Simpsons, Fox
The trials and tribulations of the half-witted, bumbling Homer Simpson still captivate the teen audience.
Malcolm in the Middle, Fox
Frankie Muniz navigates adolescence — crushes, bullies, etc. — without much help from his wacky parents or brothers.
Meet My Folks, NBC
In this reality show, parents put three would-be suitors through a series of hoops to decide which one will get the privilege of dating their daughter.
King of the Hill, Fox
Hank Hill and his family of charming hicks are a lot more sophisticated than they’re cracked up to be. Voices supplied by Loretta Lynn, Sarah Michelle Gellar and Kathy Najimy.
Dog Eat Dog, NBC
Reality, especially where humiliation is involved, sells. This hit involves contestants belittling each other as they compete in events that challenge their physical prowess and mental acuity.
Grounded For Life, Fox
On the comedy last season, Sean quit his job with the subway system on a whim and became a partner in an Irish pub. Needless to say, his wife Claudia was stunned by his decision to live without a safety net.
The Bernie Mac Show, Fox
Comedian Bernie Mac’s show that spotlights his unique views on parenting.
30 Seconds to Fame, Fox
The fast-paced summer hit pitted 24 acts against one another, and will return in the winter.
Logging On To The Top 10 Teen Web Sites
Teens pull quotes from this Web site like, “Nowhere on your birth certificate did it say life will be fair,” and send them to their friends.
Millions of teens use instant messaging to communicate with one another quickly. Sites such as Imtools.com allow them to add games and personality and IQ tests to their user profiles.
With Xprofile, teens can create a poll and survey their visitors, and add custom music and background effects to their instant messaging profiles.
Another instant messaging profile enhancer, SubProfile allows users to add a log and guestbook.
A group of teens created this Web site filled with character icons than can be e-mailed to friends.
The Web site that spawned the best-selling book, “Deal With It,” advises girls on everything from revealing their inner goddesses to finding the right college.
This Web site sells 20,000 term papers on topics ranging from Macbeth to marketing. Just what teens need – an easier way to do homework.
When instant message buddies check your profile they are asked a series of questions about their preferences via Imchaos.com’s spy survey.
Teens’ favorite Web site for news about Hollywood, music and fashion.
The Web site’s tag line is: “When you have nothing better to do,” and we can see why. Contains links to sites such as DancingBush.com, a funny video of George Bush dancing.
SOURCES: NIELSEN MEDIA RESEARCH (RANKED BY NIELSEN ACCORDING TO TV RATINGS) AND NIELSEN/NETRATINGS (BASED ON THE PERCENTAGE OF THE TARGET AGE GROUP VISITING THE SITES).