There’s No ‘i’ in Teen (Or Is There?)

Generation WE. The first generation born on the web. Gender-agnostic. Curious and courageous.

It’s a generation that is not the typical rule-breaking, rebellious band of adolescents and 20-somethings one might expect. But values and the way people behave have changed markedly.

This is the backdrop to a short talk I’m preparing for at The Holmes Report’s In2 Innovation Summit in London next Tuesday. It will raise questions about whether brands are now human enough to become their ‘friends’, and look at the specifically acute needs of a group within that generation that can be both hard to reach but is now massively influential – 19 years old and younger.

This is a generation that is growing up with a new viewpoint and wants new ‘relationships’ with brands. Above all, the insights we’ve been gathering show that often, the brands they really love are their own personal brands.

The ‘brand of me’, coupled with different kinds of needs from their relationships with family and friends.


A lot of this flows from The Human Project that Zeno began last year, which has continued to develop as we’ve added more insights, worked with more clients, and gained a sharper understanding of what drives teenagers today.

But more of that on Tuesday.