Sure, millennials aren’t watching as much TV as previous generations — but did you know why? According to a new study, the younger demographic spend more time watching YouTube and other online video outlets than TV because “they find it more enjoyable and relevant to their lives.”
Interestingly enough, the primary driver of online video consumption isn’t just ease in availability — it’s how it makes them feel. Fully 62 percent of respondents said digital content makes them “feel good” about themselves, as opposed to just 40 percent for TV. More millennials also felt that digital content is more relatable than TV (67 percent for digital content versus 41 percent for TV).
Explaining the disparity to Variety, Defy Media president Keith Richman said that “digital video is not as canned — it makes millennials feel better about who they are.”
This study corroborates with an early study from Variety that found teens 13 to 18 favor famous YouTubers and other digital stars over traditional Hollywood and music celebrities. From this study, the most influential figure for teens is comedy duo Smosh (pictured above; produced by Defy Media), followed by The Fine Bros. and PiewDiePie. These three online celebs had higher affinity scores than Jennifer Lawrence and Katy Perry, two teen-friendly celebrities you have heard of.
But teens still like popular, professional celebrities best — even if they are YouTube stars. “Things that stop your thumb-swiping are things your friends are liking and things that are professionally produced,” Richman said.