by Jordan DeGraw September 6, 2023

Industry Insights: September 6, 2023

Gen Z is Having a Bummer Summer

Hey there, lovely readers!

Welcome back to another edition of Industry Insights, your weekly dose of all things intriguing and eye-opening. We’ve scoured the depths of the business world to bring you a collection of fascinating trends, eyebrow-raising statistics, and even a sprinkle of fun to brighten up your day. So, grab a comfortable seat, and let’s dive right into this week’s lineup!


First up, let’s talk about the “elephant in the room” – the federal minimum wage. It’s been 14 years since the introduction of the $7.25 per hour rate, and guess what? It’s becoming as relevant as a flip phone in the age of smartphones (in other words – it’s losing relevance). With 30 states pushing for higher state minimum wages to combat inflation, only a mere 68,000 Americans are still earning the federal minimum. Change is in the air, my friends.

Speaking of finances, many Americans may not be able to afford a midlife crisis. Americans aged 35 to 44 hold a median balance of $4,710 in their bank accounts. Even if they drained their median 401k balance of $60,000, a snazzy base-trim Corvette might still be out of reach.

Let’s pivot a bit; Jerome Powell is not mincing words – inflation is still a concern. The Federal Reserve isn’t ready to lower interest rates just yet. We’ve journeyed far from the days of 9.6% inflation, but it seems like the Fed wants us to keep our seatbelts fastened for a little longer.

And hey, have you checked out CNN’s “Fear and Greed Index”? From extreme greed to a neutral 50 out of 100 – the tides are shifting. It’s a fascinating theory of how fear and greed can sway the stock market. It’s like the market has emotions of its own!

Let’s take a peek into the world of real estate. Did you know that nearly half of newly constructed homes now boast four bedrooms or more? That’s right, the three-bedroom home reign is slowly giving way to bigger abodes. Blame it on the work-from-home revolution or simply changing preferences, but it’s intriguing to see the trend unfold. Interestingly, more bedrooms don’t necessarily mean more space, as the total floor area for new homes has actually shrunk post-pandemic. Go figure!

Marketing Industry:

Now, onto the exciting realm of marketing! Black Friday might seem distant, but not for savvy marketers. Last year, 56% of shoppers started their holiday shopping escapades in October. Brace yourselves because Salesforce predicts global holiday sales to hit a whopping $1.19 trillion this year. It seems that even in uncertain economic times, the joy of holiday shopping remains steadfast.

The FTC’s latest influencer and advertiser guidelines are making waves too. The rules of the game are changing, my friends. Clearer disclosures, addressing #ad use, navigating paid reviews – it’s a new world out there for influencers and advertisers alike.

Illinois is taking a groundbreaking step to ensure that kids featured in sponsored social media posts get their fair slice of the pie. If they appear in over 30% of paid content within a 30-day period, their earnings are reserved in a trust fund until they hit the ripe age of 18. Kudos to Illinois for putting the young ones’ interests front and center!

Just for Fun:

Let’s wrap things up with a touch of amusement. You may want to close your window shade during your next flight. Turns out there’ve been 46 “close calls” in the skies over the past month where two planes narrowly missed each other mid-flight. It might be time to keep that shade down and enjoy your peanuts in peace.

And who could forget Gen Z? They’ve made “sad” the most searched term on Spotify. In fact, they’ve even got a “bummer summer” playlist to revel in the melancholic vibes. It’s proof that even in the world of music, we’ve got to embrace the blues now and then.

To top it all off, someone dared to ask AI what our home states might look like if they were people. The results? Well, let’s just say it’s a fun and quirky exploration of our nation’s diverse personalities.

Well, friends, that’s a wrap for this week’s Industry Insights! We hope you enjoyed this rollercoaster ride through the latest happenings in the world of business and beyond. Until next time, stay curious, stay informed, and don’t forget to savor those unexpected nuggets of knowledge that life throws your way. 

Bon appétit!

Your friendly Industry Insights devotee, 


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Jordan DeGraw

Jordan DeGraw

JD is an Enterprise Marketing Consultant, specializing in Paid Social. He finds satisfaction in coming up with exciting new strategies to take things to the next level. He often finds himself seeking to uncover the marketing strategies behind the everyday things all around us.

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