Havas has launched its latest Prosumer Report, a global study of nearly 13,000 people across 30 markets, that has titled itself with the question “‘Is the Party Over?”
“At first sight, questioning the role of partying in our lives appears frivolous, said BETC Global Chief Strategy Officers, Clément Boisseau and Sébastien Houdusse, regarding the origins of the research conducted.
“But we believe it’s the other way around: partying is a fundamental subject that puts into perspective our relationship to time, space, and to others. The dilution of party we observe in the research is, for instance, the symptom of people afraid of the unknown and tired of living in a polarized society. People who withdraw in the safety of their homes and the comfort of relationships with their closest ones.”
So where did all the party people go?
The report, after noting the importance of partying and how it importantly serves as our “social glue” says:
“Even before the global pandemic erected barriers to socialization, party culture was under assault. Stories of spiked drinks and sexual violence made headlines. Bar managers posted signs warning patrons not to leave their drinks unattended and devised code words women could use to alert staff to a problematic patron and secure a safe ride home. On top of that—from Paris to Orlando—the horrors of terrorism and gun violence began to visit pubs, nightclubs, and other popular gathering spots. Why risk going out when danger lurks around every corner?”
And then, up pops the Covid pandemic thrown into the mix which prevented people from gathering altogether. And the feeling from that lingers – the report found that 45% of Gen Zs say it “killed my desire to party”
The Changing from Homo Festivus to Homo Comfortus
Havas notes in the report the occurrence of “a dramatic shift from previous generations, who sowed their oats by spending as little time at home as feasible, Gen Zs have grown adept at shutting out the external world.”
The report adds that staying at home is not just about “vegging out” it also offers protection from external threats with the the survey finding that more than 4 in 10 Gen Zs say they avoid parties because they’re scared of potential abusive or violent encounters.
That’s more than twice the proportion of boomers who say the same, says the report.
Good news for brands
According to part of the report, there’s a widely held expectation that brands will go big and produced unforgettable events.
But you better go hard or go home: “To get Gen Zs off their couches, the event had better be worth bragging about. Extra points for memorabilia to take home and show off on one’s social channels,” the report says.
‘Is the Party Over?’ focuses on 6 main ideas throughout the report for brands to consider.
- A World of Hyperfestivity: Festivity is no longer a rare moment but has extended to many moments of the day and year.
- Homo Comfortus: If the party is everywhere, and especially at the touch of a finger, Gen Z, the indoor generation, now often chooses to stay home.
- Control Freak Society: Our society has grown obsessed with control and is having difficulties letting go when partying; meaning fewer encounters, less flirting, fewer surprises, and less alcohol.
- The Safe Place, a New Sanctuary: The “control freak society” has led to a need to retreat at home, and only celebrate with people who are like us.
- New Models of Celebration: While they occur less frequently, celebrations are still reinventing themselves, making preparation a new highlight of the festivities.
- Brands and Parties, a Virtuous Synergy: Brands can enable people to be the best version of themselves at parties and are sought after for organizing memorable celebrations.
Though all of this might dampen your party spirit, the report authors sound a positive note. And there is a role for brands.
“It doesn’t help to lament about the loss of the traditional party spirit,” said Boisseau and Houdusse.
“Rather, we want our research to explain how people are looking to new forms of celebration to reignite excitement and enchantment in their lives. And guess what? Brands have a strong role to play in the imagination.”
You can go here to read the full “‘Is the Party Over?” report.