Vox Pop

Reports published in the past two weeks by Pearlfisher with The Henley Centre and Mintel, have examined the growing value of the youth market. Given the difficulty of making a lasting impression on the British youth and the growing market that it represents to brand owners, what youth-targeted branding or product initiatives have impressed you recently and why?

‘The explosion of wrist watch-associated products has been mind boggling and has now developed into a sophisticated business with a sophisticated range of products, such as the Casio MP3 watch, with which you can download music straight from the Internet. I wish that I was a kid today with the number of mind-blowing gadgets that are around. The idea of Crazy Planet’s Gum Watch that lets you snack on bubblegum and fires rockets is fabulous.’

Rod Petrie, creative director, Design Bridge

‘The design of the micro-scooter epitomises how to make a product appealing to both the youth and adult sectors alike. Although still basically a kids’ scooter, they are full of urban chic minimalism, and with form following function. That is how the grown-ups have sought to justify riding around on them and looking ridiculous during the summer. I have done a fair amount of international travel this year and the bloody things are everywhere, getting under your feet.’

Kevin Johnson, creative director, Inovus

‘I take my hat off to Levi’s for their Houdini-like escape from the denim desert with their ongoing twisted campaign – a great piece of marketing re-invention from product to store. Of course, I now look forward to seeing what they have up their sleeves to counter their latest product being relegated to the back of every opinion-leader’s wardrobe.’

Glenn Harrison, creative director, Tango Design

‘Babycham is the classic – the sweet, sparkling pear juice of the 1950s, which was originally targeted at 16 to 20-year-old girls. It was the first time that girls could go into a pub or bar with their boyfriends and have a drink that wasn’t bitter (beer) and is the most successful teen drink invented. Other teen brands from the 1950s include the fruit sweets Spangles, the Dansette portable record player and Miners make-up.’

Catherine McDermott, design historian and commentator

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