So What Does Jayne O'Donnell Think?

25 09 2009

Luckily I got the chance to speak with Jayne O’Donnell, one of the authors of Gen Buy: How Tweens, Teens and Twenty-Somethings Are Revolutionizing Retail.


Jayne O'Donnell

Jayne O'Donnell


 O’Donnell is a retail and automotive reporter for USA Today.

While I found the book very interesting, one thing that I found to be cool was how extremely in-depth the analysis of Gen Y was. However, I wanted to ask Ms.O’Donnell what she felt about teen blogging. Here is what she had to say…..

Q: Does it surprise you that teen blogging has increased and that in the fashion world more and more teens have been using blogs to get noticed/break into the industry?

“No, it doesn’t surprise me. This is a generation (Y) that is used to having their opinions heard and valued at home so blogs are another way for them to speak out, just to a larger audience. It can help both sides. Because Gen Yers are so good at ‘connecting’ and it’s so important to them, blogs become both a way for them to reach other Gen Yers and a way for fashion retailers and manufacturers to get real time reaction from young people. Hiring these young people – if they meet the other qualifications, of course — would help fashion industry officials tap into key influencers. We argue in the book that retailers and marketers who want to reach Gen Y should use their Gen Y employees whenever possible for this – whether it’s posting their favorites on websites, sending them out to connect in communities (real or virtual) or training them in good customer service so they can recommend to consumers on the sales floor whether something looks good on them or not because that would resonate far more than it would if a baby boomer was trying to do the selling.”

Thanks Jayne, your insight if very valuable! 🙂



Think about this….

17 09 2009
Rodarte's Collection at New York Fashion Week

Rodarte's Collection at New York Fashion Week

Photo: Courtesy of the New York Times

In the style section of today’s New York Times, Rodarte’s designing duo, sisters, Kate and Laura Mulleavy, received praise and recognition. With today’s ailing economy, it is important for designers to bring something new and exciting to the table. When times are good and the fashion industry is booming, designers tend to get lazy, and are less likely to focus on fueling their creative thinking. Essentially, they are more likely to “play it safe”. However, today’s article, “All Eyes Shift to Creativity” states,

“The Rodarte show was one of the many hopeful auguries this week, signs that New York fashion has already started to regenerate itself through improvisation, experiment collaboration and the locally prized habit of taking risks.”

As I am sure you all remember, it was also Rodarte‘s designers that recently incorporated the inspiration they found on eighth grader Tavi Gevinson’s blog into their fashion design…. now that is something to think about!

Read the rest of the NY Times article here Fashion Diary – Fashion Week – All Eyes Shift to Creativity –

GenY or GenBUY?

16 09 2009

So, it seems that I am not the only one who is talking about my generation…Kit Yarrow, a professor of marketing and psychology at Golden Gate University and Jayne O’Donnell, a retail and automative reporter for USA Today, have recently published their book entitled Gen Buy: How Tweens, Teens, and Twenty-Somethings are Revolutionizing Retail.

Gen BuyBasically, the book talks about those born between 1978 and 2000, Generation Y, and their spending power in today’s retail market. Not only is Generation Y a powerful generation in terms of its ability to impact the future of the economy, but also, “Gen Yers” have reduced their spending the least during the current economic recession.

Generation Y not only has a huge influence upon the economy, but they also impact the decisions of their friends and family. As the first generation to grow up using advanced technology and social networking tools, Gen Y is equipped with knowledge and confidence.

Since I have been concentrating on the impact that Gen Y has on the FASHION industry, I thought it would be cool to share some of the statistics that Yarrow and O’Donnell included  in the book…

  • “According to Digital Marketing Agency’s Resource Interactive for Fall 2007, when it comes to household purchases, Gen Y influences 90 % of all clothing/apparel bought”
  • “65% of all Gen Y say they “love to shop” in comparison to only 43% of those over 30 years old”
  • “U.S. households with at least one member of Gen Y represent the third largest buying group in this country”
  • “At nearly eighty-four million, they [Gen Y] are the largest segment of the U.S. population”
  • “The most conservative estimates of Gen Y spending exceed $200 billion a year, and this generation’s spending will top $10 trillion in its lifetime”
  • “Stores that cater to Gen Y were about the only nondiscounters doing well in the spring of 2009”
  • “The Harrison Group’s Taylor, coauthor of the book The New Elite: Inside the Minds of the Truly Wealthy, says one need only look at Ralph Lauren and Tiffany to see Gen Y’s influence. He says young people—especially, but not only, those from affluent households—have been big drivers of the upscale accessories business.”

Talk about young people making a difference….

To learn more about this intriguing book click here Gen Buy – How Tweens, Teens and Twenty-Somethings Are Revolutionizing Retail – Yarrow & O’Donnell