New Research Shows 81% of Teens Are Happy

Tue Mar 25, 2008

Friends, Family, and TV Influence Self Image Says New Study from OTX and Intelligence Group

LOS ANGELES, March 25 /PRNewswire/ -- OTX, a leading global consumer research and consulting firm, released new results from its Teen Topix study. The study is done in conjunction with trend experts, the Intelligence Groupand taps into the complex lives of the 13-17 year old set. 750 teens across the country were surveyed on the topic of self image.

One of the key findings of the study was that a vast majority of today's teens consider themselves to be happy. 81% of teens said they were at least somewhat happy and over a third (36%) say they are very happy.

Teens are happiest with their relationships with friends, their talents, their abilities, and their school performance. While a large number are also happy with their looks, it falls lower on the list; and teens are happier with how they look online (e.g. their MySpace profile).

How happy are you with the following areas of your life
(1-5 scale, Top 2 Box)
Your relationship with friends (85%)
Your talents or abilities (80%)
How you look online (e.g. on your MySpace profile) (78%)
Your performance in school/grades (74%)
Your health (73%)
Your relationship with family members (73%)
Your looks (68%)
Where you live (e.g. the town or city) (67%)
Your relationship with boyfriend / girlfriend (66%)
Your body (58%)

However, teens are very aware of their physical appearance and the importance it plays in their lives. 61% of teens said they worry about theirlooks, and 48% said they compare the way they look with friends and peers.They were also asked about the importance of looks and physical appearancewhen it comes to certain aspects of their lives. 50% of teens said looks andphysical appearance were very important when it comes to 'being respected byothers', but only 33% said it was important for 'being liked by others', and'getting ahead in the workplace' (30%) and 'making lots of money' (27%) werelower on what is important to them.

How important are looks/physical appearance when it comes to the following?
(Very Important Summary)
The way you feel about yourself (60%)
Being respected by others (50%)
Getting a date / boyfriend / girlfriend (47%)
Getting a good job (47%)
Getting into a good college (44%)
Making friends (42%)
Your social status (40%)
Becoming famous (40%)
Who you hang out with (37%)
Being liked by others (33%)
Getting ahead in the workplace (30%)
Making lots of money (27%)
How many friends you have (21%)

Possibly as a result of the perceived importance of looks, teens arespending money to look and feel better. The survey found that teens spend anaverage of $27 per month on health and beauty products. Deodorants were themost commonly used products used on a daily basis (84%) with whiteningtoothpastes (55%), lip balms (54%) perfumes (52%), and facial scrubs (44%) also making the top of the list.

Deodorant or antiperspirant (84%)
Whitening toothpastes (55%)
Lip balm / moisturizer (54%)
Perfume or cologne (52%)
Face scrub or cleanser (44%)
Body spray (44%)
Acne products (43%)
Hair styling products (38%)
Make-up (31%)
Moisturizers (31%)

"Teens are an important consumer group, and we shouldn't forget that,"said Bruce Friend, President, Media and Entertainment Insights, OTX. "We haveto look not just at what they buy, but at what motivates them, theiraspirations, what makes them tick. We are pleased to have the IntelligenceGroup join us in the Teen Topix project to add this much needed context." When it comes to influence, teens cited a number of positive influences onself image. Asked "when it comes to those things that influence how you feelabout yourself would you say these usually make you feel better aboutyourself, worse about yourself or make no difference how you feel aboutyourself." Girlfriends/boyfriends, religion, parents, teachers, and TV showsall ranked high among positive influences.

Things that influence how you feel about yourself -- feel better about myself (among those that said these factors have a lot of influence)

Your girlfriend/boyfriend (84%)
Your religion (82%)
Your friends (79%) Your parents (74%)
Your teacher(s) (72%)
TV shows you watch (51%)
Celebrities (e.g. actors, athletes, musicians) (49%)
Magazines you read (38%)
Advertising you see (on TV or elsewhere) (33%)
Other kids in school (31%)

Teens were also asked to choose from a pair of related, yet conflicting statements. When asked if they would rather 'get a college degree' or 'win American Idol', 90% selected 'college degree.' When asked if they would like to 'have a lot of friends' or 'have a lot of money,' 76% chose 'friends,' 'feel good' (69%) beat 'look good' (31%), and 'great personality' (68%) bested'told you are hot' (32%).

"What is emerging through the Teen Topix studies is a fresh look at teenstoday," said Jane Buckingham, President, of the Intelligence Group. "Theanswers to our questions have surprised many in the marketing community andhave caused them to rethink how they need to appeal to this demographic."

Would you rather Get a new car for your HS graduation (96%)
Get plastic surgery for your HS graduation (4%)

Exercise to lose weight (91%)
Take diet pills to lose weight (9%)

Get your College degree (90%)
Win American Idol (10%)

Have a lot of friends (76%)
Have a lot of money (24%)

Feel good (69%)
Look good (31%)

Be told you have a great personality (68%)
Be told you are hot (32%)

Be Comfortable (68%)
Be Fashionable (32%)

Be the smartest kid in school (55%)
Be the best looking kid in school (45%)

Be 10 pounds under normal weight (54%)
Be 10 pounds over normal weight (46%)

Be one of People Magazine's 50 Most Beautiful People (53%)
Be one of Forbes Magazine's 50 Richest People (47%)

About OTX
OTX is a global consumer research and consulting firm that has establisheditself as a leading provider of online-based research. The company specializesin providing innovative, cutting-edge online technology, products and analysisto the marketing, entertainment and advertising communities. OTX has developedthe most innovative products available for online research today -- productsthat work to uncover deeper and more profound consumer insight. Today thecompany is one of the fastest growing research companies in the United Statesand has offices in Los Angeles, New York, Cincinnati, Miami, Chicago andLondon, with strategic partners in Japan, Australia, Russia, China, andMexico.

About the Intelligence Group
The Intelligence Group (IG) is a leading market research, trendforecasting, and marketing consulting group focusing on Gen X, Gen Y, moms,teens, and tweens. IG publishes a suite of syndicated studies, including TheCassandra Report, a comprehensive lifestyle study of 14-34 year-old mainstreamconsumers and trendsetters; TrendCentral, a daily trend email; as well asreports focused on specific demographics including the Tween Report, a studythat explores the attitudes and life-stage of 7-13 year-olds; the Mom Report,a study of females from 18 to 40 years old with children ranging from newbornto 13 years old; and the Latino Intelligence Report, a study that focuses on14-24 year-old Latino youth. The Intelligence Group is a division of Creative Artists Agency, a talentand sports agency that represents the most creative and successfulprofessionals working in film, television, music, theatre, sports and videogames, and provides a range of strategic marketing services to corporateclients.

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