A model wears an outfit from the Gustavo Lins Spring-Summer 2012 collection. (File/UPI/Eco Clement) | License Photo
The ever-important 18- to 34-year-old male demographic was the subject of the panel "The Rise of the Bespoke Male" at Advertising Week in New York on Monday.
Made up mostly of millennials who grew up in the digital age, this brand-conscious demographic is notably different from older males, according to a study from Complex Media delivered at the panel.
"Our survey contradicts many assumptions about millennial males," said CEO Rich Antoniello. "They aren't disinterested but rather quite interested in what they choose to care about. There's a big difference."
According to the survey, millennial men are concerned with having a unique style, with 80 percent saying style is important for good first impressions. Two out of three say mass media kills cool trends, and 81 percent are willing to pay more for quality. One in three are "sneaker obsessed."
"Millennial males are rebelling against the mass culture they grew up in to create their own identities, and they're highly skilled at using new media to seek out what's important to them," Antoniello said.
Nearly half of millennial males said they use social media as their primary source of news, but while one-third say their on Facebook "all day long," more than half say they are "over Facebook." Google+ is on the rise in this demo, with 16 percent saying they use it "all day long" and 22 percent using it "at least once per day."
"These young men, who we're calling 'bespoke' males, not only like to be first to discover new things, they're eager to spread the word and influence the conversation," Antoniello said.
Notably, nearly 80 percent said American brands are cool again. And fully ten percent of respondents also said they never watch live TV, important news for commercial advertisers.
Millennial males were also forced to find their first jobs amid a recession, and are largely self-starters with an entrepreneurial spirit. Two out of three hope to start their own business, and more millennial men would rather be a self-made tech entrepreneur than a famous athlete, actor or filmmaker.