Study: Millennials Still Love Going to the Movies

Study: Millennials Still Love Going to the Movies

While the number of people attending movie theaters may be down from last year — possibly due to the widespread prevalence of Netflix and other at-home streaming services — don’t go blaming the Millennials right off the bat.

A new study from New Zealand-based data analytics firm Movio reveals that the “Millennial” or “Y” Generation, typically defined as those born between the early 1980s and late 1990s, accounts for a full 29% of all movie ticket sales, averaging 6.2 film screenings per year.

The full white paper report, titled “Understanding Millennial Moviegoers: A Data-Driven Playbook,” provides further evidence that Millennials under age 25 frequent movie theaters 8.5% more often than people over age 30.

“This difference perhaps speaks to the crux of the many studies that attempt to make generalizations about such a large and diverse population of people. “We bundle them in one bucket, but the data suggests that as they get older they behave differently,” wrote Movio chief executive and co-founder Will Palmer. “They are in a transitional phase of their life, and don’t exhibit consistent behaviour as a group.”

Millennials have been characterized by the media as alternately lazy, narcissistic, or aimless, though they’re also the best-educated generation in history, with one-third holding at least a Bachelor’s degree.

But as the group ages into older adulthood and often parenthood, it’s Millennial’s spending habits that many companies and financial research analysts are most interested in. For the movie industry, Movio’s findings may be welcome news.

“Our data science analysis demonstrates that Millennials are far more engaged in cinema than the industry’s anecdotally driven belief to the contrary,” Palmer said. Despite the difference in attendance between the under-25s and over-30s, the younger age group actually spent an average 7% less on the overall movie-going experience — meaning concessions, 3D screenings, or family ticket purchases.

“One of the major findings on Millennial moviegoers was that the motivation for in-theater viewing is largely to satisfy their need for instant gratification for content,” Palmer added — so it’s probably safe to say that the summer blockbuster tradition won’t be going away anytime soon.

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