The Margin: The spending life of teens: Nike, Chipotle and Snapchat


How do teenagers spend their time and money?

Turns out, they’re buying Chipotle

burritos and Nike

gear when they’re not scrolling through Snapchat
according to investment firm Piper Sandler’s

latest young consumer survey.

The firm just released its semi-annual research project dedicated to unraveling the spending and usage habits of American adolescents. It surveyed 10,000 teens with an average age of 15.8, quizzing them on their preferences.

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Chick-fil-A, Starbucks

and Chipotle

dominated teenage food tastes, with Chipotle leapfrogging over McDonalds

as the third most preferred restaurant for teens, according to the survey.


was the overwhelming favorite clothing brand for the 11th straight year, as 27% of respondents said the swoosh was their top choice — no other brand reached even 10%. But Lululemon

and fast-fashion e-commerce company Shein have gained marketshare in recent years, and were cited as the top clothing brand for 5% and 4% of teens, respectively.

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When it came to shopping online overall, however, Amazon

 was the top e-commerce website for 56% of respondents, while the next brand, Shein, was the favorite of 9% of the teens surveyed.

Snap Inc.

was once again the favorite social media brand, as 35% of teens preferred it over any other company. But TikTok is hot on its heels, with 30% of teens naming the video-streaming site as their favorite social media platform. Instagram’s popularity has slipped, however: 22% of teens named the Facebook-owned photo-sharing site as their social media choice, which is down significantly from its peak of 31% in spring 2020.

What’s more, legacy social media brands like Facebook

and Twitter

are now below messaging platform Discord in terms of teen preference. It’s more bad news for Facebook, which has been under fire as a whistleblower has accused the company of putting profits over the safety of its teen users on Facebook and Instagram. What’s more, Facebook apps were down for almost six hours on Monday, which could end up costing the company millions of dollars.

Teens surveyed in Piper Sandler’s report also claimed to be getting involved in digital assets such as cryptocurrency and non-fungible tokens (NFTs), particularly males.

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Among the surveyed teens, 9% claim to have “bought bitcoin

or another cryptocurrency,” with 81% of those teens identifying as male. Those gender divide also held true for identifying NFTs, as 33% of male teens said they had heard of them, compared to 10% of females.

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