Busting the millennial myth: How 38 million 'Transformists' are reshaping how we work, live, and spend

Meredith Guetig

Today's most powerful influencers are not Millennials, according to a survey by Insider Inc. and Digitas of more than 1,600 U.S. adults ages 18 to 54. Defying demographics, they cut across ages and backgrounds—and are united by a proactive, ambitious, change-for-the-better mindset.


Called Transformists, these consumers are digitally-savvy, adept at using technology to navigate and succeed in the world around them. Curious and connected, they gather information from many sources—and use that information to shape their decision-making.

Transformists live by their values and are driven by high expectations—both for themselves and for the people and brands around them. Brands that understand and speak to these Transformers can benefit strongly from their loyalty—and turn them into their most powerful advocates.

For more detail on how Transformists work, live, and engage with the world around them, click here.

Here are 5 tips to find — and win — Transformists' loyalty.

  1. Look beyond Millennials. For too long, marketers have been fishing in the same Millennial hot spots — but the swath of Transformists goes well past age 30. Marketers should also speak to Transformist consumers in their 30s, 40s and 50s who share the same go-getter mindset as their younger peers.

  2. Don't hide your values. Transformists don't want or need everything to be politicized — but they value knowing what a brand stands for, what its purpose is, and how it's working to affect change. Brands should speak authentically and openly about their mission and how they are trying to make a difference beyond their organization.

  3. Get newsy. Transformists are unabashed information-seekers. Brands should choose media platforms for advertising and content that Transformists gravitate towards, and consider engaging them with information that acts as a learning experience and satisfies their curiosity, rather than relying on marketing platitudes.

  4. Appeal to their ambition and adventure. Transformists are self-avowed adventure seekers and go-getters. Brands should find ways for Transformists to seek out new experiences that drive personal growth.

  5. Encourage word of mouth. Transformists are well-versed in issues and products, and well-connected in their communities. Brands can gain their loyalty by encouraging feedback and providing a platform to share informed and respected opinions.

In the digital era, sorting people by age misses the boat entirely. Many of the more ambitious ones who grew up in the digital age share in common distinct likes, dislikes and ways of behaving that cross generational lines. The key is to understand that this group - Transformists - are uniquely savvy and demanding when it comes to seeking information and acting on it.

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For more information, download our Transformists infographic.