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The Teens Market in the U.S.

The Teens Market in the U.S.


The Teens Market in the U.S., a new Packaged Facts report, provides a comprehensive analysis of the consumer behavior of the 26 million 12- to 17-year-olds who comprise the teens market. With an aggregate income of $80 billion, teenage consumers represent an important consumer segment in their own right. Moreover, parents spend another $110 billion on teens in key consumer categories such as apparel, food, personal care items, and entertainment.

Twenty-first-century teens are among the first Americans to grow up using computers and engaging with the Internet as part of their everyday routine. The report demonstrates how teens are on the cutting edge of the media revolution now underway in the American consumer economy and highlights what marketers can do to attract the attention of the important teens market both now and in the future.

The Teens Market in the U.S. begins with an assessment of the teenage market size and growth, and a demographic profile of teenage consumers. The next section of the report focuses on how teens spend their time, beginning with their involvement with computers and the Internet. The report continues with an in-depth look at how social networking sites have changed how teens relate to their friends and the world at large. There is a separate chapter on the leisure and entertainment choices of teens, including books, video games, music, watching movies at home, and going out to live entertainment events, the movies, and restaurants. An analysis of teenage consumers' media consumption includes an assessment of trends affecting magazine readership, the effect of multitasking on television viewing, and the impact of the Internet on traditional media usage.

The next section of the report analyzes how teenage consumers spend their money. This includes chapters on the sources of teens’ income; their shopping behavior and buying patterns, both in stores and online; and highlights of consumer behavior in fashion, personal care, and food.

The Teens Market in the U.S. concludes with a section analyzing emerging trends in the teens market. A chapter on advertising and marketing approaches highlights the impact of social networking sites on marketing to teens today, while another chapter provides an overview of strategic trends and marketing opportunities in the teens market.

Report Methodology


The information in The Teens Market in the U.S. is based on both primary and secondary research. Primary research involved interviews with experts, public relations and industry analysts in firms that specialize in teen market research. The report features unique analysis based on the Simmons Market Research Bureau Fall 2006 National Consumer Survey and Fall 2006 Teen National Consumer Survey. Secondary research entailed data-gathering from relevant trade, business, and government sources, including company literature.

About the Authors


Dr. Robert Brown and Ms. Ruth Washton have written more than 30 Packaged Facts reports analyzing demographic trends and marketing strategies in key consumer segments. Topics have ranged from kids to mature consumers to multicultural groups such as Hispanics and African Americans. Dr. Brown and Ms. Washton have co-authored several Financial Times Business Reports on strategic business issues and have provided market and competitor intelligence studies for clients in a variety of industries. Dr. Brown has a B.S. from Georgetown University and a Ph.D. degree from The George Washington University. Ms. Washton has a B.A from Skidmore College and an M.A. from the State University of New York.

How You Will Benefit from this Report


If your company is interested in understanding and reaching the teenage market, you will find this report invaluable, as it provides a comprehensive package of information and insight about teenage consumers not offered in any other single source. You will gain a thorough understanding of the current demographic profile of teenage market. Contributing to that understanding will be a complete analysis of data from published and trade sources, and in-depth examinations of the economic and societal trends that influence teenage consumer behavior. Plus, you’ll benefit from extensive data, presented in easy-to-read and practical charts, tables and graphs.

The Teens Market in the U.S. Will Help:

  • Marketing Managers identify market opportunities and develop targeted promotion plans for teen products.
  • Research and development professionals stay on top of competitor initiatives and explore demand for products targeting the teenage population.
  • Advertising agencies to develop messages and images that compel teen (or their parents) to purchase these products.
  • Business development executives understand the dynamics of the market and identify possible partnerships.
  • Information and research center librarians provide market researchers, brand and product managers and other colleagues with the vital information they need to do their jobs more effectively.


  • Executive Summary
    • Introduction
      • Scope and Methodology
      • Market Overview
      • Demographic Profile of the Teen Population
      • Teens Online
      • The Social World of Teens-Online and Offline
      • Leisure and Entertainment Choices
      • Teens and the Media
      • Financial Profile of Teen Consumers
      • Shopping Behavior and Buying Patterns of Teens
      • Highlights of Consumer Behavior of Teens
      • Marketing and Advertising Approaches
      • Trends and Opportunities
  • Overview
    • Market Overview
      • Size and Growth of the Teens Market
        • Table Size of Teen Population by Single Year of Age, 2006 (in thousands)
        • Table Population Trends in the 14-to 17-Year-Old Age Group, 1980-2015
        • Table Projected Growth in the Teens Population by Age Group, 2006 vs. 2011 (in thousands)
        • Table Aggregate Income of 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group, 2006
        • Table Average Annual Family Expenditures on Food, Clothing, Personal-Care Items, Entertainment, and Reading Materials for 12-to 17-Year-Olds, by Percent of Total for Each Age Group, 2006 (in millions)
        • Table Aggregate Annual Family Expenditures on Food, Clothing, Personal-Care Items, Entertainment, and Reading Materials for 12-to 17-Year-Olds, by Percent of Total for Each Age Group, 2006 (in millions)
        • Table Aggregate Annual Family Expenditures on Food, Clothing, Personal-Care Items, Entertainment, and Reading Materials for 12-to 17-Year-Olds, by Age Group, 2006
        • Table Projected Growth in Aggregate Income of 12-to 14-Year-Olds, 2006-2011
        • Table Projected Growth in Aggregate Income of 15-to 17-Year-Olds, 2006-2011
        • Table Projected Growth in Aggregate Income of 12-to 17-Year-Olds, 2006-2011
        • Table Projected Growth in Family Expenditures on Food, Clothing, Personal-Care Items, Entertainment, and Reading Materials for 12-to 17-Year-Olds, 2006-2011
    • Demographic Profile of the Teen Population
      • Overview
        • Table Percent of Males and Females by Selected Age Groups, 2005
        • Table Non-Hispanic Whites and Multicultural Population Groups as Percent of U.S. Population by Age Group, 2005
        • Table Race and Hispanic Origin of 12-to 17-Year-Oldsby Age Group, 2006 (in thousands)
        • Table Non-Hispanic Whites as Percent of 14-to 17-Year-Olds, 1990-2015
        • Table Place of Residence of 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Size of Metropolitan Area
      • The Family Environment of Teens
        • Table Living Arrangements of 12-to 17-Year-Olds, 2006 (in thousands)
        • Table Living Arrangements of 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Race and Hispanic Origin, 2006 (in thousands)
        • Table Size of the Families of 12-to 17-Year-Olds
        • Table Attitudes toward Parents and Family, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Gender and Age Group
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Who Like Spending Time with Their Families, 2006 (in thousands)
  • How Teens Spend Their Time
    • Teens Online
      • Teens and Computers
        • Table Access to and Use of Personal Computers by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Demographic Characteristic
        • Table Use of Personal Computers by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
      • Teens and the Internet
        • Table Impact of the Internet, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Accessing the Internet, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Frequency and Length of Use of the Internet at Home by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Frequency and Length of Use of the Internet in Other Places by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Number of Websites Visited in Last 7 Days, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Online Activities in Last 30 Days of 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Websites Visited in Last 30 Days by 12-to 14-Year-Olds by Gender
        • Table Websites Visited in Last 30 Days by 15-to 17-Year-Olds by Gender
    • The Social World of Teens- Online and Offline
      • Teens at School
        • Table Grade of Enrollment of 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Single Year of Age, October 2005 (% of Total Population of Each Age Group)
        • Table Attitudes toward School and Success, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Gender and Age Group
      • Teens and Their Friends
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Who Enjoy Keeping in Touch with Their Friends by Age Group and Single Year of Age
        • Table Attitudes toward Friends, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Gender and Age Group
        • Table Impact of Internet on Social Life, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Gender and Age Group
        • Table Impact of Internet on Social Life of 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Gender and Single Year of Age
        • Table Online Social Networking Activities of 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender and by Type of Activity
        • Table Online Social Networking Activities of 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Gender and Single Year of Age and by Type of Activity
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Whose Parents Are Concerned about Who They Instant Message, 2006 (in thousands)
      • Teens and Their Cell Phones
        • Table Ownership of Cell Phones by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender and by Brand
        • Table Services Included on Cell Phones of 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender and by Type of Service
        • Table Amount of Last Monthly Bill of 12-to 17-Year-Old Owners of Cell Phones by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Use of Telephone Credit Cards by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender and Type of Card
    • Leisure and Entertainment Choices
      • Overview
        • Table Spending Time, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Attitudes toward Selected Leisure Activities, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Sports Most Popular with 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Leisure Activities Done in Last 12 Months by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Ownership and Use of Cameras by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender and by Type of Camera
      • Reading Books
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Reading Books Other than School Books by Gender and Single Year of Age
        • Table Kind of Books Read by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Types of Books Read by 12-to 17-Year-Old Boys by Age Group
        • Table Types of Books Read by 12-to 17-Year-Old Girls by Age Group
      • Playing Video Games
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Playing Video Games by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Attitudes toward Video Games, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Playing Video Games by Gender and Single Year of Age
        • Table Purchases of Video Games, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Owning or Playing Video Games by Age Group and Gender and by Brand of Video Game
        • Table Types of Video Games Played by 12-to 17-Year-Old Boys by Age Group
        • Table Types of Video Games Played by 12-to 17-Year-Old Girls by Age Group
        • Table Number of Video Games Bought and Rented in last 12 Months by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
      • Listening to Music
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Saying "Music Is a Passion with Me" by Gender and Single Year of Age
        • Table Demographic Profile of Teen Music Lovers
        • Table Ownership of MP3/Digital Media Players by Age Group and Gender and by Brand
        • Table Demographic Profile, 12-to 17-Year-Old Owners of MP3 Players vs. All 12-to 17-Year-Olds
        • Table Audio Equipment Owned by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender and by Type of Equipment
        • Table Attitudes toward Music, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Favorite Types of Music of 12-to 17-Year-Olds
        • Table Favorite Types of Music of 12-to 17-Year-Old Boys by Age Group
        • Table Favorite Types of Music of 12-to 17-Year-Old Girls by Age Group
        • Table Favorite Types of Music of 12-to 17-Year-Old Boys by Race and Hispanic Origin
        • Table Favorite Types of Music of 12-to 17-Year-Old Girls by Race and Hispanic Origin
      • Watching Movies at Home
        • Table Demographic Profile, 12-to 17-Year-Old Owners of DVD Players vs. All 12-to 17-Year-Olds
        • Table Movie Genres Rented and Purchased on DVD by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
      • Going Out
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-olds Who Say They Go Out a Lot, by Gender and Single year of Age
        • Table Live Entertainment Events Attended in Last 12 Months by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Movie Attendance of 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Movie Genres Seen in Theater by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Attitudes toward Eating Out, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Going to Family Restaurant by Age Group and Gender and Name of Restaurant Chain
        • Table Attitudes toward Fast Food, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Going to Fast Food and Drive-In Restaurants by Age Group and Gender and Name of Restaurant Chain
        • Table Demographic Profile of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Who Visited Fast-Food Restaurants 14 or More Times in Past 30 Days
    • Teens and the Media
      • Print Media
        • Table Magazines Popular with 12-to 17-Year-Old Girls by Age Group
        • Table Magazines Popular with 12-to 17-Year-Old Boys by Age Group
        • Table Attitudes toward Newspapers, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Newspaper Readership by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Newspaper Readership by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Household Income
      • Television and Radio
        • Table Attitudes of 12-to 17-Year-Olds toward TV by Demographic Characteristic
        • Table Attitudes toward Television Programming, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Types of Television Shows Viewed by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Net Audience of Broadcast Networks, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Cable TV Services Viewed by 12-to 17-Year-Olds
        • Table Cable TV Services Watched by 12-to 17-Year-Old Boys by Age Group
        • Table Cable TV Services Watched by 12-to 17-Year-Old Girls by Age Group
        • Table Percent of Teens Listening to the Radio during Previous Week by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Radio Formats Most Popular with 12-to 17-Year-Old Boys by Age Group
        • Table Radio Formats Most Popular with 12-to 17-Year-Old Girls by Age Group
        • Table Radio Formats Most Popular with 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Race and Hispanic Origin
      • Teens and Online Media
        • Table Impact of Internet on Media Usage, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Online Media Activities in Last 30 Days of 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
  • How Teens Spend Their Money
    • Financial Profile of Teen Consumers
      • Family Finances
        • Table Household Income of Teens by Income Category
        • Table Financial Profile of 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Household Income
      • What Teens Think about Money
        • Table Attitudes toward Money, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Gender and Age Group
        • Table Ownership of Bank Accounts, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group
        • Table Use of ATM/Debit Cards, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group
        • Table Attitudes toward Credit Cards, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Gender and Age Group
      • Where Teens Get Their Money
        • Table Income Sources of 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group
        • Table Percent of High School Students Employed during Either the School Year or Summer
        • Table Aggregate Annual Income Received from Allowances/Money for Chores, 12-to 17-Year-Oldsby Age Group
        • Table Aggregate Earnings of Employed 12-to 14-Year-Olds, 2006
        • Table Aggregate Earnings of Employed 15-to 17-Year-Olds by Single Year of Age, 2006
        • Table Aggregate Annual Income Received from All Sources by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group
    • Shopping Behavior and Buying Patterns of Teens
      • Shopping In Stores
        • Table Visits to Shopping Malls in Last 4 Weeks by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Visiting a Shopping Mall in Last 4 Weeks by Single Year of Age and Gender
        • Table Demographic Profile, Frequent Mall Visitors vs. All Teens
        • Table With Whom 12-to 17-Year-Olds Visited Shopping Malls by Age Group and Gender
        • Table With Whom 12-to 17-Year-Olds Visited Shopping Malls by Single Year of Age
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Making a Purchase in Department/Discount/Clothing Stores
        • Table Department/Discount/Clothing Store Shopped in Last 3 Months by 12-to 17-Year-Old Girls by Age and Name of Store
        • Table Department/Discount/Clothing Store Shopped in Last 3 Months by 12-to 17-Year-Old Boys by Age and Name of Store
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Shopping at Home Electronics Stores in Last 3 Months by Age Group and Gender and Name of Store
      • Overview of Teens' Buying Patterns
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Who Say They Are "Passionate about Getting the Best Deal for Things I Buy" by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Who Prefer to Buy What Their Friends Approve by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Spending Money on Selected Categories of Products and Services by Category of Expenditure
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Old Boys Spending Money on Selected Categories of Products and Services by Age Group and Category of Expenditure
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Old Girls Spending Money on Selected Categories of Products and Services by Age Group and Category of Expenditure
      • Buying from Catalogs and Online
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Who Bought Merchandise from Catalogs in Last Year by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Who Bought Merchandise from Catalogs in Last Year by Age Group and Gender and Type of Merchandise and Amount Spent
        • Table Shopping Online by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Gender and Single Year of Age
        • Table Items Ordered on Internet in Last 3 Months by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Amount Spent on Internet in Last 3 Months by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender and by Method of Payment
        • Table 12-to 17-Year-Olds Spending $100 or More on Internet in Past 12 Months by Gender and Single Year of Age
        • Table 12-to 17-Year-Olds Spending $100 or More on Internet in Past 12 Months by Household Income
    • Highlights of Consumer Behavior of Teens
      • Following Fashion
        • Table Attitudes toward Fashion, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Attitudes toward Looks, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Standing Out in a Crowd, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Who Think Shopping for Clothes is Boring, by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Preferring "Lots of Cheaper Clothes Rather Than Few Expensive Ones" by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Buying Jeans by Age Group and Gender and by Brand of Jeans
        • Table Brand of Jeans Most Popular among 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Demographic Characteristic
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Buying Sneakers/Athletic Shoes in Past 12 Months by Age Group and Gender and by Type and Brand of Sneakers/Athletic Shoes
        • Table Brand of Sneakers Most Popular among 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Demographic Characteristic
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Buying Watches in Last 12 Months by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Percent of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Buying Watches in Last 12 Months by Demographic Characteristic Population Segment %
      • Personal Care
        • Table Use of Personal-care Products by 12-to 17-Year-Old Girls by Age Group
        • Table Use of Personal-care Products by 12-to 17-Year-Old Boys by Age Group
        • Table Use of Personal-care Products by 12-to 17-Year-Old Girls by Race and Hispanic Origin
        • Table Use of Personal-care Products by 12-to 17-Year-Old Boys by Age Group and Race and Hispanic Origin
        • Table Use of Non-Prescription Medications by 12-to 17-Year-Old Boys by Age Group and Race and Hispanic Origin
        • Table Use of Non-prescription Medications by 12-to 17-Year-Old Girls by Age Group and Race and Hispanic Origin
      • Food
        • Table Eating Habits, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Diet and Weight Loss, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Attitudes toward Nutrition, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Food Shopping by 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
  • Market Trends
    • Marketing and Advertising Approaches
      • Receptivity to Advertising
        • Table Impact of Advertising, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Impact of Product Placements in Video Games, 12-to 17-Year-Olds by Age Group and Gender
        • Table Demographic Profile of 12-to 17-Year-Olds Most Susceptible to Advertising vs. All 12-to 17-Year-Olds
      • Marketing to Teens
    • Trends and Opportunities
      • Key Trends
      • Market Opportunities
        • Table Selected Opportunities Related to Traditional Media Consumption of Teens
        • Table Selected Opportunities Related to Online Habits of Teens
        • Table Selected Opportunities Related to Ownership of Cell Phones by Teens
        • Table Selected Opportunities Related to Leisure Activities of Teens
        • Table Selected Opportunities Related to Teen Shoppers
        • Table Apparel Purchases by 12-to 17-Year-Old Boys and Girls in Last 12 Months
        • Table Opportunities Related to Use of Personal-Care Products by12-to 17-Year-Old Boys and Girls
        • Table Selected Opportunities Related to Teens and the Travel Industry
        • Table Selected Opportunities Related to Teens and the Financial Services Industry
  • Addresses of Selected Teens Market Resources

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