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Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

  1. #26
    Lifer Chippertheripper's Avatar
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry


    I gather it doesn't matter what you think, it only matters when you were born.
    Xennial is a new one for me. Either way, labeling someone by their generation is a gross oversimplification.
    You don't need to be a certain age to be an asshole.

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  2. #27
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by SRTie4k View Post
    Harley, it's image and it's riders are almost entirely about "impressing your friends". Given that Harley owns over half the motorcycle market, it seems to me that image is almost entirely what sells motorcycles.
    Do you know any Harley owners that don't ride? Every Harley owner I know rides quite a bit actually. The choice of motorcycle may be rooted in vanity, but they still enjoy riding so I think it's fair to say there is a genuine element there. Yes, there are many who buy bikes to pose but this isn't necessarily the norm. It just appears that way because it's a more visible trend.

    The wine and spirits market has always had an element of image within it, but historically people bought what they liked. Usually the vanity came in the form of saying one thing and doing another. They would say they like something to fit an image, but would turn around and buy what they actually like (a completely different product). In the end, individual preference along with a genuine interest in wine were always the drivers. With millennials this is not the case. Personal preference is pretty much non-existent for them. Everything is about what they see on social media, what their friends say, or what a bar tender tells them.

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  3. #28
    Burns retinas nhbubba's Avatar
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    I think there are several brands that attract the kind of rider he's talking about, Harley is definitely one of them. I think most of the euros qualify too. Tell me there aren't Duc riders that spend more time gazing at their bikes then riding them.

    That said, that's not the point. Both Harley and Ducati make some quality products. Coincidentally both seem to be playing into this move towards attracting younger riders. I agree, I'm all for it. But I still question how strong the new motorcycle market can be here in the US moving forward. My best guess is to expect more and more products offered here that are actually designed for other markets and don't entirely feel like a real "hit" for US buyers. As current examples I'd offer the entire 300 class as well as Harleys new water-cooled 500's and 750's.

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  4. #29
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by BSR6 View Post

    The wine and spirits market has always had an element of image within it, but historically people bought what they liked. Usually the vanity came in the form of saying one thing and doing another. They would say they like something to fit an image, but would turn around and buy what they actually like (a completely different product). In the end, individual preference along with a genuine interest in wine were always the drivers. With millennials this is not the case. Personal preference is pretty much non-existent for them. Everything is about what they see on social media, what their friends say, or what a bar tender tells them.
    The popularity of Tito's validates this. There is nothing special about that cheap ass vodka, but the hipsters go nutty for it. I'm sure it's partially due to its Austin origins.

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  5. #30
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by gixxer72 View Post
    The popularity of Tito's validates this. There is nothing special about that cheap ass vodka, but the hipsters go nutty for it. I'm sure it's partially due to its Austin origins.
    Tito's is an incredible market phenomenon. Did you know they do blind tastings for with experts all the time and no one can ever tell the difference between vodka's of the same grade? Vodka is a neutral grain spirit. The only difference lies between the low grade and higher end stuff and it's in the amount of times it's distilled.

    Despite these facts...People are buying Tito's like crazy and insist it's the best out there.

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  6. #31
    Lifer Chippertheripper's Avatar
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Vodka is a waste of time and energy. Next.

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  7. #32
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    If you want a thriving new motorcycle market you need a middle class that can comfortably afford housing and health insurance. Also, millennials are spending used-moto money on bicycles instead. They're green, they got bling, you can lane split in the city, and you can bring it inside your 600sqft apartment in the winter.

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  8. #33
    Lifer gixxer72's Avatar
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by Chippertheripper View Post
    Vodka is a waste of time and energy. Next.
    Wrong. So wrong.

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  9. #34
    Lifer Imbeek's Avatar
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Good. Keep wearing out more Xbox controllers or whatever the latest and greatest way is to play Cowboys and Indians without breaking a sweat or taking any risk whatsoever. More used bikes for MEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

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  10. #35
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by BSR6 View Post
    Do you know any Harley owners that don't ride? Every Harley owner I know rides quite a bit actually. The choice of motorcycle may be rooted in vanity, but they still enjoy riding so I think it's fair to say there is a genuine element there. Yes, there are many who buy bikes to pose but this isn't necessarily the norm. It just appears that way because it's a more visible trend.
    I'd say this is accurate. That and given how easy it is to find a 10 year old sport bike on CL with 3,800 miles...who is really not doing the riding?

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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    From my experience with the younger generation, they are more interested in the social aspect of everything. Either that stems from social media, or social media thrives on them, I don't know. But I found none of my prior co-workers had any interest in my motorcycle. But they would line up Friday afternoons to get an invite out on the boat where they could hang with others, take selfies, and be generally seen by their peers either in person or on snapbook. Another interesting thing I've noticed with them, they don't care about engine driven toys. Cars to them are an evil necessity if they even need one. They buy a bland camcord and drive it only when necessary, no enjoyment from the experience. A motorcycle is that much further of a non-necessity and add in you can't have friends with you or selfie while doing it, they don't care. Our of the 40+ sub 30yo people I worked with, 2 liked cars. The rest didn't care nor had a clue about anything combustion driven.

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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by Falko View Post
    Our of the 40+ sub 30yo people I worked with, 2 liked cars. The rest didn't care nor had a clue about anything combustion driven.
    This ratio seems accurate for the entire age range, not just millennials.

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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by TheIglu View Post
    This ratio seems accurate for the entire age range, not just millennials.
    Maybe it is just where I work, but everyone here is very interested in cars/bikes. All of my friends have a petro-powered toy of some kind. But the younger gens have different interests.

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  14. #39
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    You all are over generalizing this. There are so many weird stereotypes that you're throwing at this its almost like you haven't talked with anyone under 30.

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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by Falko View Post
    Maybe it is just where I work, but everyone here is very interested in cars/bikes. All of my friends have a petro-powered toy of some kind. But the younger gens have different interests.
    Work somewhere else where most people aren't technical/manu/engineering.

    The amount of 4 door Wranglers, PT Cruisers, Kia Soul's and Subaru Outbacks at my work = people who hate all that is right in the world.

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  16. #41
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by TheIglu View Post
    Work somewhere else where most people aren't technical/manu/engineering.

    The amount of 4 door Wranglers, PT Cruisers, Kia Soul's and Subaru Outbacks at my work = people who hate all that is right in the world.
    What's wrong with a 4-door Wrangler? My brother and I each have a 2-door and a 4-door Rubicon. Makes hauling the family and all our stuff a round a lot easier.

    Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry-18033217_10155279703164637_2713220187284977184_n-jpg

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  17. #42
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    I guess I can see that.

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  18. #43
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by TwelveGaugeSage View Post
    What's wrong with a 4-door Wrangler? My brother and I each have a 2-door and a 4-door Rubicon. Makes hauling the family and all our stuff a round a lot easier.

    Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry-18033217_10155279703164637_2713220187284977184_n-jpg
    Hey, whatever works for you. Most owners I know never use them for anything that justifies a solid from axle.

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  19. #44
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by BSR6 View Post
    Personal preference is pretty much non-existent for them. Everything is about what they see on social media, what their friends say, or what a bar tender tells them.
    That's interesting, and I'm trying to think if I can apply it to my own experiences. But I keep circling back to the only thing that is different is that they have access to all of their friends through social media. Instead of a recommendation on a wine from their neighbor/coworker, it's from the 10 snaps over the weekend indirectly displaying it. It's not so much that they're incapable of personal preference. There's so much easy access to what everyone else is enjoying. Why ignore that?

    I do value what my friends choose because I trust them as sources of info. I know there's no sponsorship or advertising relationships. In a sea of choices at the store, why not try what my friend bought last weekend? If they liked Fireball Whiskey and Moe's tacos then I probably would too.
    Quote Originally Posted by gixxer72 View Post
    The popularity of Tito's validates this. There is nothing special about that cheap ass vodka, but the hipsters go nutty for it. I'm sure it's partially due to its Austin origins.
    Meh, Grey Goose played a similar role 15-20 years ago. Except Tito's isn't as expensive.
    Quote Originally Posted by Falko View Post
    Cars to them are an evil necessity if they even need one. They buy a bland camcord and drive it only when necessary, no enjoyment from the experience. A motorcycle is that much further of a non-necessity and add in you can't have friends with you or selfie while doing it, they don't care. Our of the 40+ sub 30yo people I worked with, 2 liked cars. The rest didn't care nor had a clue about anything combustion driven.
    I saw the same with the 'camcord' thing, but thinking about it more, that really started before millennial could drive. Some who grew up with muscle cars still have enthusiasm but there's plenty of people age 40-50 driving soulless vehicles. I don't really know that many people in the 40+ bracket who care about cars anymore, even if they did have something interesting in the past. I'm gonna blame the radar gun

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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by maxim_X View Post
    You all are over generalizing this. There are so many weird stereotypes that you're throwing at this its almost like you haven't talked with anyone under 30.
    Oh really.

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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Vodka is shit.

    Gin is where it's at. Farmers is the best I've had followed up by Hendricks.

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  22. #47
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by TheIglu View Post
    Hey, whatever works for you. Most owners I know never use them for anything that justifies a solid from axle.
    That goes for the 2-doors as well, especially in New England. Arizona and Colorado were a bit of a different story. My wife and I were always by far the youngest couple out on the trail when we were out there, so I think the same plight hitting motorcycles may be hitting rock crawling. It's just too expensive for most young adults to get into. Our 4-door, by the way, is currently the wife's "minivan", but she wants to lift it and hit the trails, and it is an appropriate 6-speed(neither of us like automatics). But even the ones that don't need a solid axle, I get it. How many 4WD Convertibles are on the market? Outbacks, while not for me, make sense for a utilitarian. They make a lot more sense to me than all the car based "SUVs" on the market pretending that they aren't station wagons.

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  23. #48
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Generalizations are annoying as hell, but I think there is some substance to using stereotypes to talk about the generational shifts in thinking/attitude between, say, a 25-year-old and a 45-year-old. I got deep into computers almost exactly when the Internet showed up. Connectivity has changed a lot of things, among them I think a much more superficial experience overall. People living in the virtual world seem to take less satisfaction from real experiences and often pursue experiences for the sole purpose of talking about them on social media; the dopamine kick doesn't come from riding the bike, it comes from getting 157 likes on your bike pics. Yes, definitely an oversimplification but you can see threads of this behavior everywhere in life - even creeping into the older gens.

    I have friends/family on the entire age spectrum and for most of the younger ones, there's always part of their brain that's "checked out" because it's thinking about what's happening in the virtual world. It affects me too, and it certainly isn't just millenials, but they are/have been most exposed to the digital life.

    Health care, cautious lifestyles, the attitude that anything industrial/motor-related is somehow evil, and less disposable income all seem like important factors.

    Social acceptance of riding would go a very long way though. People who otherwise would fall in love with riding might never get a taste because they don't buy the "image", and we're definitely an image-oriented country.

    Quote Originally Posted by nhbubba View Post
    I think another obstacle in the US is the cost of health care. We, as a society, are scaring ourselves into being too afraid of getting injured to ride. The simple fact is for most younger riders a fall with even a non-life altering injury can cost them tens of thousands of dollars and legitimately wipe them out. I've heard this from younger people a number of times lately. Especially the younger, fresh out of school and not fully employed ones.
    Yes, without question. Even with my overly expensive ACA insurance I won't go to a doctor unless it's critical, the copays and deductibles and specialist fees can still rack up thousands in bills for something simple.

    I still can't help but feel injury/medical bills are still incredibly important to everyone, but for some reason people used to just do it anyway.

    Quote Originally Posted by TwelveGaugeSage View Post
    The community and the manufacturers should also be pushing for free MSF basic rider course and licensing for those who complete it. That is how I got my license in PA years ago. You tend to draw a lot more people to try it when you eliminate a lot of the high initial costs. In MA, the cost of a BRC is ridiculous. $350+ is stupid.
    No doubt. They just changed the laws in Maine and it's about $350 minimum to get into it. I know a few guys who basically gave up pursuing the license because it has become another expensive barrier, when riding itself was already almost unaffordable.

    Quote Originally Posted by aldend123 View Post
    Another factor is that people often need a place to store their bike half the year. Cue articles about how less and less millennial are buying houses.

    Edit: I've tried to convince friends to buy bikes, and they just roll their eyes at this point. I told them I won't stop They have zero interest. They drive boring cars, and see it as a waste of time. There is zero enthusiasm. Robo-cars can't come soon enough for some of them. The ones with hints of enthusiasm struggle with the practicality aspects. Perception of them being murdercycles doesn't help either.
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  24. #49
    Lifer gixxer72's Avatar
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    Quote Originally Posted by csmutty View Post
    Vodka is shit.

    Gin is where it's at. Farmers is the best I've had followed up by Hendricks.
    Gin is for sailors. You might not have tried a quality vodka yet (no, grey goose is not good vodka).

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  25. #50
    Lifer BSR6's Avatar
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    Re: Millenials and the so-called dying motorcycle industry

    In terms of unit volume...Vodka is and always has been 30% of the market. When you consider that vodka is one of 12 major spirits categories that's a HUGE market share. Cordials come in second at around 18% , but this isn't a fair measure since the cordials category is just a bunch of miscellaneous stuff that doesn't fall into the other major categories. The remaining categories fall somewhere between 5 and 10%.

    Within the vodka segment around 75 - 80% of the unit volume is straight vodka, with flavors making up the remaining 20 - 25%. This fascinates me because the flavors are where things get interesting and vary greatly by brand, yet the majority of the volume still comes from the straight stuff where there is very little difference between brands. Just to expand on my point above...Vodka really only needs 5 offerings....One in each grade of quality. If the experts can't tell the difference between products of the same grade, the consumer sure as hell can't. Despite this fact, people still buy a shit load of vodka and insist on particular brands. It just goes to show how effective marketing really is. If the consumers knew better, they would buy whatever is on sale within the quality segment they prefer.

    So when you look at it that way...Yes, vodka is the shit. In terms of sales it's crushing every other spirits category by a long shot. If you are a drinker you're almost certain to have a bottle of vodka in your liquor cabinet for one reason or another.

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