Poll: The Millennial Palate Prefers Fast and Mobile Eats

Poll: The Millennial Palate Prefers Fast and Mobile Eats

When it comes to dining out, millennials prefer to satisfy their taste buds at quick and convenient eateries like Five Guys, The Cheesecake Factory, and Chick-fil-A, according to a new study from The Harris Poll.


Recently, The Harris Poll released its 29th annual EquiTrend Study, which “measures brands’ health over time,” reports theharrispoll.com. The study analyzes solid brands in several industry sectors—including finance, media, travel, retail, restaurant, and tech—in relation to consumer feedback.

A press release breaks down the poll’s analysis of restaurant brand equity within the context of generational age groupings as follows:

 “According to Harris Poll’s research, when analyzing restaurant brand equity by generation, ‘Coffee and Quick Service Restaurant’ brand equity is nearly five points (+4.7) higher among millennials compared to baby boomers, while ‘Casual Dining and Chicken’ restaurants are each four points higher. Conversely, ‘Pizza’ (-8.0) and ‘Fast Casual Mexican’ (-7.6) restaurants see a marked gap among baby boomers, pushing the overall equity for these restaurant categories below average. Since brand equity tends to resist movement, the equity gains and declines among restaurant brands is significant.”

The findings come as many of those outlets have or continue to apply new strategies to offer millennials more convenience and serve them faster to boost market share with that generation.

“Restaurants continue to adapt to the millennial lifestyle, and advancements in ordering methods such as Starbucks’ mobile app and Chick-fil-A’s ‘Mom Valet’ are likely influencing millennials’ higher brand equity scores,” Joan Sinopoli, vice president of brand solutions at The Harris Poll, stated via a press release.

She added while the millennial dollar is powerful and attractive and many are clearly enjoying their rising disposable income, baby boomers already have the cash to spend on meals out and need to be courted.

Sinopoli went on to say that the “baby boomer versus millennial gap among pizza chains and Mexican restaurants may reflect boomers’ needs to eat healthier and the fact that they no longer have kid palates to please—and that signals opportunity for restaurants on the healthier end of the chain continuum to target them in their messaging and menu offerings.”

More than 100,000 consumers assessed 4,000 plus brands, including 90 restaurant brands across over 450 categories as part of the poll. The Index included three benchmarks—familiarity, quality, and purchase consideration—culminating in a “brand equity” rating for each brand.

Brands rated the highest are presented The Harris Poll EquiTrend “Brand of the Year” award for their particular segments.

The 2017 Harris Poll EquiTrend Restaurant Brands of the Year:

The full list can be viewed at http://www.theharrispoll.com/equitrend-rankings/2017.

Jeffrey McKinney is a long-time freelance business writer and reporter, contributing to Black Enterprise magazine for several years on a broad range of business and financial topics.