Millennials Mobilizing Post-Election

September 19, 2017       Andy Segedin      

Millennials, defined as those born between 1980 and 2000, are dissatisfied with the country’s overall direction and are seeking out means of engaging in the aftermath of last year’s election. A recent survey of 3,000 Millennials showed that 39 percent believe that the country is heading in the wrong direction, while 29 percent feel otherwise and 32 percent believe that it is too early to tell. With regard to President Donald Trump, specifically, 49 percent of respondents indicated that they were dissatisfied with the president or extremely dissatisfied, while 27 percent indicated that they were satisfied or extremely satisfied with his performance.

The responses are colored by the fact that 51 percent voted for Hillary Clinton as compared to 35 percent for Trump.

The findings come from the second phase of the 2017 Millennial Impact Report conducted by Achieve and supported by The Case Foundation. The survey also showed that Millennials have turned their discontent into actionable items. Better than two out of five (42 percent) reported that they have shared more content about causes important to them on social media since the 2016 general election, while signing petitions (40 percent), applying social beliefs to purchasing decisions (37 percent), donating (35 percent), and volunteerism (31 percent) counted among other areas in which Millennials have increased participation in recent months.

Males showed greater increases in actionable behavior across every subcategory as compared to females, an increase in amount or frequency of donations being the most popular (47 percent). Sharing content on social media was the most common increased behavior among females (38 percent).

Millennials also show a particular interest in local causes (41 percent) as compared to national causes (19 percent). Males are more likely to draw toward national causes as compared to females (26 percent to 12 percent), while females drive the preference for local action (45 percent to 36 percent). Civil rights and racial discrimination (29 percent), employment and job creation (26 percent), healthcare reform (26 percent), and the environment (21 percent) represent causes and social issues of most interest.

Recommendations made by authors of the report included educating yourself about the methods in which Millennials prefer to show support, align specific causes and social issues with platforms and pathways for action, and start catering to Millennials now as opposed to thinking of them as a future audience.

Other key findings from the report included:

. Millennials are more likely to engage in non-traditional means of support as compared to donating or volunteering. When asked which behavior is most typical for them, signing a petition (21 percent), attending a protest (16 percent), attending a rally or march (10 percent), and supporting political candidates of similar views as them (10 percent) were the leaders. Volunteering (7 percent) and donating (6 percent) were the sixth and eighth-most popular responses, respectively;

. Millennials are most likely to self-define as cause and social-issue supporters (49 percent) as compared to activist (21 percent), advocated (17 percent), and ally (11 percent). Activists, among subgroups, have been the most likely to increase actionable behaviors since the general election. Activists are also the group most satisfied with the direction the country is heading (44 percent) as compared to allies (35 percent), advocates (33 percent), and supporters (36 percent); and,

. They’re not completely confident in the nonprofit sector. When asked to rate their confidence in organizations to solve issues, just 57 percent said that they were confident or very confident. Males (68 percent) were far more confident in organizational performance than females (44 percent).

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