The Gummy

They’re the young, hip end of ‘gummiedom’, also known as Generation M – and a huge untapped commercial market

Name: Mipsters. Age: Between 16 and 24. Appearance: Like hipsters, but Muslim. That’s what a mipster is? A Muslim hipster? Yes. Is that allowed? Why wouldn’t it be? I don’t know. I’m afraid to ask any more questions. Actually mipsters are only a sub-type – they’re a sort of gummy. Gummy? What’s a gummy? A global, urban Muslim. Is someone in charge of making up these words? Are there any rules at all?Mipster was originally coined on an American listserv for young Muslims who strove to combine Islam with a modern urban lifestyle, although in that case the plural was rendered Mipsterz. Why must a modern urban lifestyle have to be incompatible with good spelling?These days words like gummy and mipster are more often deployed as marketing terms. Gummies, for example, represent an emergent category of consumer – “hyperdiverse, spiritual rather than religious-with-a-capital-R, educated, transnational”. And mipsters? They’re the young, hip end of gummiedom, sometimes known as Generation M. Their hallmarks are identity, fashion, friendship and education. What does that even mean? I don’t know, but it’s important to keep tabs on what young Muslims get up to these days, so we can target them more effectively. You sounded a bit like Donald Trump just then. Not at all. We just need to learn as much about mipsters as possible. Why? So we can sell them more stuff. According to the Muslim Lifestyle Expoconference, Muslims are a huge and largely untapped commercial market. Are you saying Muslims don’t shop? Of course they do – the worldwide market for halal products is worth £1.5 trillion annually. Whoa. But mipsters’ needs still aren’t being addressed effectively at retail level. There are missed opportunities in the travel sector, skincare, fashion and lifestyle brands. There were those burkinis you could buy at M&S. True, but at the moment big companies are losing out to startups created by young, entrepreneurial Muslims who’ve spotted the gap in the market. Mipsters are doing it for themselves? If you like. Do say: “Young Muslims have demonstrated their increasing power. We have to make a bigger effort to understand their changing cultural requirements …” Don’t say: “…so we can sell them well-sick hijabz.” Source of article: theguardian.com

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