One of today’s most sought-after consumer groups, the Millennial generation is a force that cannot be ignored. Made up of individuals ages 18 to 33 who are diverse in both ethnicity and background, Millennials account for approximately 30 percent of the population and spend an estimated $200 billion annually.
So how do you connect with this powerful, influential generation? Here are the top three things you need to know when marketing to Millennials:
Millennials embrace technology
Consumers today are constantly connected, from the time they wake up until the time they go to bed. However, Millennials are by far the most connected generation, with 94 percent owning a cell phone, 70 percent owning a laptop, 69 percent owning an iPod or mp3 player and 23 percent owning a tablet. On top of that, 83% of Millennials said they sleep with their cell phone on their bed or right next to their bed. Millennials use technology for communication, entertainment and education. Whether watching online videos, using social media sites, texting from their smart phones or playing online games, their world is digital.
What does this mean for you as a brand? Your world must be digital, too.
- Mobile websites and social media marketing are a must when targeting this market.
- Consider engaging texts that drive Millennials to interesting content and can be easily forwarded to friends. But make sure they opt in to receive these texts; otherwise, they can be viewed as an intrusion.
- Gain their attention by posting appealing videos with calls to action on YouTube or Hulu, as well as your website and social media pages.
- Get in the game by delivering your message consistently and subtly via online gaming sites and offering special deals or exclusive/limited edition benefits.
Millennials value the experience
When it comes to purchasing preferences, it’s all about the experience. This group wants to have a good experience before, during and after their purchase. Convenience, accessibility and instant delivery are also important. When deciding what to buy, they seek value for their money, and they want to keep up with their peers. Establishing a personal connection with brands and finding those that offer a shared experience is key for Millennials.
What does this mean for you as a brand? You need to connect with your audience.
- Build loyalty and connect with Millennials by responding to them when they tweet or post about your product or organization. This shows that they are heard and appreciated.
- Focus on the availability of your services and products online and on demand.
- Use social media and establish brand communities to foster conversation.
- Make sure to demonstrate your product’s quality rather than bombard them with a sales pitch.
Millennials are cause-conscious
This generation is often stereotyped as spoiled and entitled; however, similar to Baby Boomers, Millennials are a very cause-conscious generation. A Ypulse survey of 1,300 high school and college students found that 72 percent invest in a specific cause. Seventy-nine percent regularly volunteer, and half regularly donate money. Seventy percent would be willing to pay more for a product that is connected to a cause in some way.
As a Millennial, I can attest to this – I have bought multiple pairs of TOMS shoes at a premium price because for each pair I buy, the company donates a new pair to a child in need. If this wasn’t TOMS’ policy, I would think twice before buying them.
What does this mean for you as a brand? You must give back – with passion.
- Show that you care by demonstrating the difference your organization is making.
- Consider an authentic investment in a relevant cause that engages and excites Millennials.
Are you marketing to Millennials? What strategies and tactics have worked best for you? Join the conversation below.