The youths of today have spoken – no matter how many anti-drug or anti-alcohol ads they are exposed to, at the end of the day, it is their peers who are the most influential factor on whether or not they take their first puff, or taste that first drop of booze.

The Dolly magazine ‘Youth Monitor 2011’, conducted across 12 focus groups with girls aged 14-to-17 and an online survey with more than 1000 teen boys and girls, found that only 32% of boys and 43% of girls thought anti-drug and alcohol campaigns were effective.

Growing up in the age of technology, gadgets and social media (90% have a Facebook page and 85% access their account at least once daily), Australian youths are highly cynical, and respond well to brands and people who have earned their trust. According to Tiffany Dunk, editor of Dolly: “Trust is crucial to today’s teens. It’s a quality they demand from their family, friends, idols and brands as they live in a world where things aren’t always as they seem.”

Interestingly, while being so connected, family is still the most important aspect of teens’ lives, with 48% of teens admiring their mother more than any other person, and only 13% believing that their parents do not understand them.

Magazines also remain an influential medium, with 80% of teens agreeing that ‘even though there’s a lot of information available on the internet, I still enjoy reading magazines’, and 90% preferring to consume magazines offline.

Belle Kwan
BY Belle Kwan ON 26 September 2011
Assistant editor, Marketing magazine & marketingmag.com.au
A marketer's dream who believes everything she sees on TV.
Advertising is not evil, it is an artform and a science.
  • While I won’t question the scientific rigour of the study I will definitely question whether the subjects in this study understand the situation well enough to know what the biggest influences on their behaviour are.

    “…and an online survey with more than 1000 teen boys and girls, found that only 32% of boys and 43% of girls thought anti-drug and alcohol campaigns were effective”
    I’d prefer to see data on drug trials, use and abuse in response to ads, rather than just asking teenagers if the ads affect them at all.

    The last paragraph in this article is a little strange though. A study by Dolly magazine found that magazines remain an influential medium?
    Forgive my cynicism…..

    • Peter Roper

      Cynicism is always useful, Mat. And don’t forget this article was published in Marketing *magazine* …conspiracy?