Cultural Consumers Cling to Creative Pursuits Despite Weak Economy

What’s the meaning of life? Cultural consumers tell us it has something to do with creativity.

The 2009 American Life and Culture Report is ready. Our latest survey finds that cultural consumers—those who actively consume cultural goods (books, film, music, theatre) — are still spending on creative comforts even in the face of a frigid economy.

• 78 percent continue to buy books
• 73 percent are paying for cable
• 67 percent are attending live theater
• 63 percent are renting and attending movies

Despite a weak economy, cultural consumers are making room in their budgets for ticketed entertainment by increasingly attending free events. They’re not living a diminished lifestyle. Instead, they’re carefully curating experiences that further their personal growth and help them live a meaningful life.

Our research found that free concerts and live entertainment are available to 90% of consumers and 69% use them. Ninety percent have access to open green spaces and 73% take advantage of them.

We reached into 2,300 households in 26 markets to discover whether the economy was changing people’s core values and leisure patterns. To round out the picture, we interviewed 10 brand managers who are having success with cultural consumers, especially young creatives. Marketers from Red Bull, Ford Motor, MySpace and Google generously shared their insights about what it takes to reach young RenGen.

Our findings are available for FREE download.