No matter what business you’re in, marketers can never seem to stop hearing about a certain generation born in the 80s and 90s. Millennials— love them or hate them, they’re here to stay. And if you want them to do business with you, you have to start paying attention ASAP.
Why Marketers Should Make Millennials a Priority
Millennials buying power is on the rise as they enter their 30s and 40s. They are unlike any generation that came before them, and marketers need to rise to the challenge:
Today’s most lucrative market are millennials
They may not have reached their full buying power as a group yet, but it already eclipses that of other generations. Millennials already make up 25% of the population. They already have approximately more than a trillion dollars of annual buying power. Clearly and quite simply, they are now the most lucrative market.
Because of this, almost every marketer today is prioritizing Millennials – or at the very least, trying hard to understand what drives this group.
Millennials are not loyal to brands
According to Daymon Worldwide’s Millennial market research, only 29% of Millennials buy from the same brand. That’s a dramatically lower brand loyalty score in comparison to previous generations.
That’s not necessarily a bad thing. For one, it means that smaller or newer brands have as much chance of capturing Millennial attention as more established brands. However, this also indicates that brands have to work harder to attract – and most importantly, keep – Millennial consumers. Get ready to constantly innovate your service and marketing strategy.
Millennials are incredibly tech-savvy
Pew Research, in a recent survey, found that nearly 100% of Millennials say they use the internet. They are not shy about using technology. This opens a lot of opportunities for marketers and businesses, especially those who use technology to sell or who sell technology.
Millennials love their devices
In another survey, Pew Research also discovered that 9 out of 10 Millennials own and frequently use a smartphone. Widespread device usage naturally increases the potential of consuming online content, which in turn opens new doors for marketing.
Finally, keep in mind the Millennial shift is not a fad. It’s an inevitable development as Millennials start becoming the driving force behind many industries. Now more than ever, it’s important to develop new marketing tactics that will make an impression on this unique demographic.
Marketing to Millennials: How to Do It Right
First things first – throw most conventional marketing tips out the window. The usual ads, taglines, and product placements will not sway most Millennials. Instead, try to integrate these tips into your marketing strategy:
Create authentic content
Statistics say that Millennials spend around 242 minutes using apps and going online per day. And they’re not just looking at anything – they particularly love content-driven media.
They’re exploring social media, blogs, and websites to discover remarkable content. Not only do they crave genuine content, but they also want to share it with their community. That means tweeting, linking, sharing, pinning, commenting, and forwarding what they find to their audience.
The most effective way to do this is by creating value-loaded content with no obvious marketing agenda. Millennials want content they can trust, not something that only tries to sell. It’s a fantastic way to magnify your organic marketing reach if you do it right.
Forget about outbound marketing methods
Millennials want to feel involved and connected when it comes to the things they buy, and this is not something that traditional marketing generally encourages.
For instance, outbound marketing methods like radio spots, direct mail campaigns, magazine ads, and TV commercials do not impress Millennials. In fact, that’s the fastest way to turn them off. In their minds, these marketing tactics are company-focused, impersonal, and contain nothing of substance.
The data paints a harsher picture – only 1% of Millennials say a good advertisement can inspire trust.
Instead, turn your marketing attention to forums, blogs, YouTube videos, social media pages, etc. Minimize intrusive ads. Again, center your campaign around authentic content.
Instead, use inbound marketing to be informative
Millennials love supporting businesses committed to improving their customers’ lives using valuable, informative content. Think videos, blog posts, white papers, e-books, and how-to articles instead of bland service and product listings. They also lean towards thought leadership, and this is your chance to share high-ranking killer content that showcases your knowledge of the industry.
Connect organically by putting Millennials first
Marketers need to make Millennials feel that they are the priority, not their wallets. That’s why educational content is a key element of marketing to Millennials— it shows that you care about them, and not just their money.
Try focusing on experiences instead of products. If you’re in the travel industry, for instance, center your ad campaign around activities and connections, not souvenirs. Time and again, businesses with genuine campaigns win with this demographic.
In the spirit of authentic connection, Millennials crave being involved instead of being marketed to. They want to become brand co-creators and have a say on future products and services.
One of the secrets of marketing to millennials is including them in the product development process. Coca-Cola was incredibly successful with this approach. They encouraged their audience to create animations, videos, photographs, and illustrations, then used this content for their marketing campaigns around the world. It was mutually beneficial— the brand was able to bring fresh authenticity, while Millennials were able to express themselves into a product designed for them.
Marketers: Start Listening to Millennials
Marketing to Millennials is not a one-and-done affair. It’s a long-term play because this generation is wired for honest, content-driven, and trustworthy experiences. They’re looking for brands that listen to the voices they yearn to share and the selves they’re craving to express.
It’s not just enough to offer them your products and services – you need to create a genuine connection before you can even hope to attract Millennial dollars. Finally, this doesn’t just encourage marketers and businesses to step out of their comfort zones, but to become their better, more transparent, and more authentic selves.