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5 Reasons Why Millennials are Adopting Subscriptions

Living in a society that is plagued with changing trends and styles can be really rough on younger people. We often forget who we are in the vast world of ever-changing trends and tend to jump on the train of popularity hoping that we will arrive at some important place that gives us purpose and identity. For the millennial generation, this is life and it’s not getting any easier.

Life, as it evolves in this never-ending changing culture, can almost seem like a whirlwind to most of us. The new norm is just to keep up with the constantly changing technology trends. Social media, the latest digital devices, where to find new media from videos to music, there’s a lot going on. One of the newest trends that is taking off is subscription-based services. This seems to be growing stronger day by day and rightfully so.


Subscription based businesses lead to people having an easier way to access what they want without having to pay a ridiculous amount of money to get it. A perfect example is Apple’s new music subscription service Apple Music which offers people unlimited access for only $14.99 per month. This is an amazing deal considering that one album download or CD is equivalent to that pricing. So not only does a subscription based service like this save money, it gives the trend-seekers the ability to download and listen to the newest trending music without having to break the bank doing so.

Millennials love this kind of access and that is why over the last decade we have seen a huge spike in torrent and Share4Share sites. In short, young people are not really willing to pay a big price to be entertained.
Netflix was one of the first companies to take the subscription route and they are pretty much the industry leader today. Forget about watching regular television, with annoying commercials, or waiting a whole week to catch the next episode. We want what we want – and we want it now!

The younger generation knows that we can instead get the access that we so desire without the high price tags and limited access. This goes back to trends and a society that is ever-changing and can all be easily accessed on social media like Facebook and Twitter.

There are many reasons why millennials are adopting the subscription-based lifestyle. Here are five of the top reasons subscriptions work for the millennial generation:

1. Millennials Do Not Want Ownership


Ownership has been a real struggle for millennials. Why own something when you can just have access to it at any time and then let it go whenever you want, right? Although there usually is an option to purchase such items, most millennials would rather not.

Take, for instance, the fact that most people, especially in their 20s or early 30s, don’t even care if they own a house or not and actually would prefer to just rent. That’s according to a report by Business Insider which states that the roughly 77 million millennials in America place more emphasis on sharing and trading than they do on owning because they are battered by student loan debts and the recession.

Even though people used to buy cell phones, videos, CDs and other forms of music in the past, these full out purchases are no longer necessary and don’t really make sense. Today, if we want to have the newest and best deal there is, we can’t do that if we are tied to a two-year contract. This is why cell phone companies are shifting to a lease-based service that allows customers to get the newest phone every year.

2. Millennials Want to Be Connected To Everything


Being connected to anything and everything at any given time is definitely part of being a millennial. Being connected is what makes us feel like we belong. Millennials have easy access to just about everything nowadays, with smartphones, handy little tablets, just a bunch of devices that make it so easy to be online all the time. Sure, maybe we depend far too much on our smartphones these days, but this is what gives us unlimited access to the world at our fingertips.

Being able to Skype with someone halfway across the world would have never been possible without the advances of technology. As well as staying connected to people through various forms of technology, we also see that 40% of millennials are willing to pay for their news in some form, from printed newspapers to digital news apps. Although 40% is a lot of people, that still means a whopping 60% will not pay. This shows us that millennials are more apt to find a free way to get their news.

3. Millennials are Lazy and Entitled


Don’t shoot the messenger! This is the general consensus of American adults. According to a 2014 Reason-Rupe Poll, 71% of American adults think the millennial generation is “selfish” and 65% think they are “entitled.”

Being entitled creates this idea that everything should come to us and we shouldn’t have to pay much for it and that is exactly what subscriptions cater to. Being entitled has pushed this generation into laziness and into a need for everything to be spoon fed to them.

But, even though this laziness has led to the millennial generation having a bad reputation, it has birthed the need for subscription-based services. Subscriptions are being adopted not only because it’s easier but because it’s smarter and clearly a better service for today’s needs.

4. Millennials Lack the Desire for Commitment


Commitment is a scary thing to think about when you’re young and the last thing you want to do is lock yourself into some form of agreement for a long time. This means that millennials try to find things they can indulge in without any long-term commitments.

According to Pew Research Center, millennials disengage themselves from organized religion and politics, are burdened by debt, distrustful of people, and are in no rush to marry. The report says 50% of people aged 18 to 33 describe themselves as political independents and about 29% say they are not affiliated with any religion.

Most staggering is the fact that only 26% of the millennial generation is married. At the same age that millennials are now, 36% of Gen X, 48% of Baby Boomers and 65% of the Silent Generation were married.

These statistics are indicative of the way millennials face everything in life. Just like not being ready to get married, younger people aren’t really ready, or have the means, to buy a new car or house, but instead, are more likely to lease or rent. And they’d rather lease or adopt subscription-based models as far as new video, music, software, mobile devices, and any new technology goes. This way, when something new – something better – comes along, there’s nothing holding us back from getting it. There is more value on content and less on commitment.

5. Millennials Want High Quality


After conducting a survey on millennials, researchers found that the most important thing to a millennial is quality. They are always looking for the newest and best thing out there. Subscriptions provide the best quality. When you buy something and own it, you have to pay for upgrades and new features but when you do a monthly subscription you get automatic updates.

One example is Adobe Photoshop. If you buy it to own, it will cost you $240 but if you subscribe to the monthly pricing you pay $9.99 per month and you have unlimited updates while on the subscription plan. This is a huge benefit in quality because software like this is always updating to become the best on the market. So why would we fork out $240 when we can get a better product at our fingertips at all times for a much smaller monthly fee?

Ultimately, with the way our society is evolving, millennials are going to continue to migrate towards subscription-based plans because it is by far a better deal and they recognize that. Although it may be hard for baby boomers to see this, you can be sure that eventually, all products will soon have some form of subscriptions to stay ahead in the game and retain as many customers as possible. It is just where our culture is going!

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