Here's How Pop Culture Is Changing For Millennials

04/23/2017 10:32 pm ET Updated Apr 25, 2017

Proximity is the new watchword in pop culture and marketing. Today, millennials ― and everyone else ― live with only one degree of separation from everything. We are closer than ever to the things and people around us - closer to our favorite celebrities, closer to our governments, closer to our communities, closer to each other.

Brands, celebrities, fans, and content creators have even started acting like one another ― brands act like people, and people act like brands.

This is highlighted in an intriguing new study from Viacom Velocity. “The making of pop culture used to feel very far away, but with the shift from top-down distribution of messaging and content to a reality where many people can communicate together, influence culture, and deeply connect over shared interests there are remarkable implications for marketers and content creators,” says Dario Spina, CMO of Viacom Velocity.

This new Culture of Proximity will have a far-reaching impact in marketing and branding. The study says that 61 percent of Millennials say they can influence popular culture and they have some ownership in the things they are fans of. What will this mean for brands who aren’t ‘listening’?

Millennials seek social experiential marketing ― they want to experience their favorite brands, music, travel, etc. and then they want to share that experience. Are brands ready for that?

We also know that millennials value honesty, transparency, and interconnectedness. Now more than ever, brands must provide a cool and shareable experience that stars the customer.

Culture is food, it’s art, music, and fashion, it’s geography, it’s family. The impact of the Culture of Proximity is changing the dynamic and it’s changing fast. Get on board now.

Beverly is the author of the best selling book The Power of Real-Time Social Media Marketing. She also teaches the Global Business of Sports & Entertainment at UCLA Anderson School of Management and is a thought leader in IoT, Big Data and Digital Media trends.

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