Youth culture’s whirlwind nature spells a heady challenge for anyone whose business depends on reading the minds of the 14-to-30-year-old set.
The traditionally relied-upon quarterly and monthly trend reports are often dated by the time they’re published, leaving marketers scrambling for current information.
DeeDee Gordon and Sharon Lee, founders of Hollywood-based Look-Look, have turned to the Internet as a means of obtaining the fastest and most precise research and analysis on the youth market.
The pair met at their former employer, research firm Lambesis, where they created the popular trend tome the L-Report. Prior to that, Lee, 33, was involved in strategic planning and client services for advertising agencies; Gordon, 31, started in retail before branching into research, youth trends and product development.
Although the two are mum about Look-Look’s clients, they include major and even Fortune 500 firms from the entertainment, automotive, financial, fashion and beauty worlds. (At press time, subscription rates were being reworked and were therefore unavailable.)
What companies look to Gordon and Lee for is the hard data they collect via their Web site, look-look.com. Some 10,000 respondents answer multi-subject questionnaires and surveys that can track specific brands, trends — even topical issues.
Results are then organized into several categories: fashion, entertainment, technology, activities, eating and drinking, health and beauty, mood (how they feel about life) and spirituality.
Subscribers may scroll through the massive archive of digital images snapped by Look-Look’s international posse of trend hunters, and download charts and graphs that instantly provide analysis on a given topic to use in company presentations. And instead of taking months, as conventional, on-paper surveys do, Look-Look offers turnaround times of weeks or even days.
As for the young contributors, they are rewarded with points that can be traded for cash or high tech treasures such as digital cameras. Gordon and Lee are quick to note their recruits take part in the surveys for more than just phat fortunes. “We’ll meet a kid in a city and find they have a lot to say about what’s going on,” said Lee.
Further setting Look-Look apart are their research procedures. “Methodology is crucial, especially the quantity and quality of the sample. We can take a sample of 300 or of thousands,” boasted Lee. “That’s up to Gallup standards.”