How much do they earn? What are their life goals? What do they do to unwind? Who are their icons?
Adults are constantly being polled about one thing or the other; now here's one for the kids. Cartoon Network recently conducted the eighth edition of its 'New Generations' lifestyle survey, directing these questions at kids aged between seven and 14, and parents of those aged between four and six.
“Understanding kids is part of our DNA,” says Duncan Morris, vice-president, research and market development, Turner International Asia Pacific. “Turning the clock back to 1998 when we first did the survey, there was no research out there on kids; most were on young adults aged 15 and above. So we were filling a gap.”
In keeping with the general recession-prompted preoccupation with money matters this year, the kids were quizzed on their 'earnings' (pocket money - remember when making money was that easy?) and what they're doing with it. From the findings, it would seem like the gloomy economic climate hasn't affected mom and dad's generosity in the least.
“We were pleasantly surprised to find that the proportion of kids getting pocket money as well as the amount of pocket money kids got had gone up significantly,” says Morris. “In spite of the economic downturn, kids had more money in hand.”
Forty-one per cent of kids polled (a total of 7,874 kids in 15 cities) received pocket money, up from 36 per cent in 2008, and the amount of money had gone up by a healthy 39 per cent. Even better, it looks like the kids are being mighty wise with all that cash - 62 per cent claim to be saving a part of their pocket money, and here in namma Chennai, that number goes up to a whopping 92 per cent.
“Kids in Chennai demonstrated a strongly conservative and academic streak,” comments Manasi Narasimhan, associate director, research and planning. “That really leapt out at us.”
For instance, when polled about their choice of profession - scientist versus fashion designer - 79 per cent of Chennai kids said they wanted to be scientists (as opposed to a national average of 62 per cent). The other difference? A definite regional loyalty when it came to icons. If the national favourite was Shah Rukh Khan and Katrina Kaif, in Chennai it was Vijay and Jyothika (followed by Suriya and Asin).
“In the South - Bangalore and Hyderabad included - kids tend to go with regional stars, whereas the rest of the country is dominated by Bollywood,” says Manasi.
According to the survey, more and more kids also have access to computers and the Internet, though TV is still far and away the biggest draw in their lives. “Traditional media such as the newspaper comes in second, followed by radio, comics, magazines and the Internet,” says Morris. “But TV remains the dominant medium, with 92 per cent watching daily.”
Looks like 'New Generations 2009' had good news all around. Kids being studious and money-wise, parents being generous, and - just what the folks at Cartoon Network wanted to hear - plenty of TV being watched!