All Eyes On The London Villages

Exterion Media ran an incredibly interesting morning at the ICA last week, where the great and the good of the OOH industry were invited to look at the different villages throughout London. The basic premise of the morning’s research and structure was that London is a unique city because it hasn’t grown up concentrically, but is actually an amalgamation of small villages that have come together to create a huge conurbation. That fact gives each area in London, or London Village, a unique vibe and its own distinct crowd of people who live there. Equally, where you choose to live within London speaks volumes about who you are, what you like, and ultimately, what stage of life you are at. The morning focused on three different demographics.

Well Heeled

Found in Wimbledon, Hampstead, Richmond and Blackheath, the Well Heeled are the wealthiest people in London. They are business leaders in positions of power, with either old or new money. The inhabitants of these areas are eight times more likely to earn more that £150,000 per year. They have discerning taste, strong opinions and money to burn.

Urban Gentry

The next group of people were the Urban Gentry, found in some of my favourite London places: Brixton, Kensel Rise, Stoke Newington & Stratford. I recognised my peers in this bracket, people who have young families, who are passionate about the local ideal, who have watched their area become gentrified and therefore a more enjoyable place to spend time and raise families. This crowd are two times more likely to earn more than £70k, they are a younger audience than the Well Heeled crowd, but are ready to settle down.

Generation Next

The third audience segment that we were introduced to was Generation Next, found in areas such as Leytonstone, Holloway, Crystal Palace and Acton, all areas on the cusp of being the next big thing. 40% liberals, 34% of them in the 20 – 34 age bracket, and 60% earning over 40K, these are the people who enjoy being out and about, they are artistic and thoughtful, sociable, young, hip and urban.

From a personal perspective, it was a really informative morning – fascinating to hear about the London Villages that I know well, frequent often, in a city that I love very much. But it was also great from a business perspective, with clear and useful audience insight for our OOH planners to use in their future campaigns.

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