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MTV Youth Marketing Forum 2014: India’s Youth is ‘curious to curate’

The ‘Curious Minds’ studyis the only Indian research for this year’s ESSOMAR Congress to be held in France

Sarmistha Neogy | Mumbai | April 17, 2014

(Left) Christian Kurz, VP, Research, Insights and Reporting, Viacom International and Sudhanshu Vat, CEO, Viacom 18 (Right)

(Left) Christian Kurz, VP, Research, Insights and Reporting, Viacom International and Sudhanshu Vats, CEO, Viacom 18 (Right)

MTV organised the 9th edition of its Youth Marketing Forum here yesterday and unveiled the ‘The Curious Minds’ study, an in-depth research on today’s youth which is growing up in a connected world. Significantly, the study is the only one from India to be selected for presentation at the prestigious ESSOMAR Congress in Nice, France.

Aditya Swamy, EVP, Viacom 18, and Head – MTV & MTV Indies, said, “We found that young people have more than ever curiosity to curate, which gave us the theme ‘curious minds’. The study was conducted by the team over a period of six months after interviewing more than 11,000 young people in the age bracket of 13-25 years across 40 cities in India.”

Swamy discussed some of the key takeaways from the report which revealed that curiosity arises because the youth today is born in the age of technology and stays connected to the worldwide web always. This need to engage is causing a constant urge to know more. The youth no longer believes parents to be the ‘gatekeepers’ but are proud of them. They understand that money cannot buy happiness and it is only a mandate. They now see admiration as the new reward, and two out of three said they would rather be respected than be rich, while 85 per cent said they would rather be honest and lose, than cheat and win.

“Brands are tapping into this curious generation and have realised that they cannot be passive any longer and need to make a stand to connect to the youth,” Swamy added.

It was also announced at the forum that for the first time, the MTV ‘The Curious Minds’ research will be the only study from India to be selected for presentation at the prestigious ESSOMAR Congress in Nice, France, because of the sampling method used in the study.

Shashi Tharoor, Union Minister of State for HRD, was the next speaker who engaged the audience with his witty comments. Tharoor stated that there are a whopping 150 million first-time voters in India this year. The youth have realised that if they don’t take the decisions themselves, others will take them on their behalf which will influence their lives. According to him, the three issues which need to be addressed immediately in India are corruption, the deep-rooted inefficiency in the system and understanding the real sense of what it means to be an Indian.

Irfan Van Ewijik, Co-founder of Irfan, Duncan & Theo, the company that successfully produced internationally renowned festivals such as Tomorrowland and Sensation, spoke about the marketing strategies around his events in the Electronic Dance Music Scene and the various mediums the brand uses to connect to the youth. “Try not to sell, but promise and overperform. Surprise them, serve them right, give them space and they will stay tuned,” observed Ewijik.

Other speakers at the forum included Heather Smith, Co-Chair, Rock the Vote, who spoke about the impact the young voters can have on the direction of their countries, as nearly 40 per cent of the world’s population is less than 25 years of age. Christian Kurz, Vice-president of Research, Insights and Reporting for Viacom International Media Networks, discussed the priorities in the lives of the youth, their aspirations and beliefs, and what they hope for in their world tomorrow. Steven Sos, Regional Sales Director, Shazam Entertainment, talked about the music recognition app that has been keeping music lovers across the globe entertained, and how social media is a great tool for brands to get feedback from the younger generation.

Key findings of ‘The Curious Minds’ research:

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Sarmistha@BestMediaInfo.com

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