Millennials, who are defined as people ages 18-34, are projected to outnumber the Baby Boomer generation this year. Knowing this, marketers in all industries are rethinking many of their traditional, outdated methods of reaching consumers. And rightly so.
While there’s certainly a large difference of lifestyle even within the millennial generation - college students today experience education, and life in general, much differently than 30-year-olds did in their college days - there are some things all millennials have in common. The way they conduct business, manage their personal lives, and shop for goods are more internet-driven than we’ve seen as a society ever before. Traditional marketing methods don’t impact this generation the way they have impacted buyers in the past - mainly due to over-saturation.
Are you struggling to reach a primarily millennial target audience? Keep reading to learn how you can successfully reach millennials with your marketing efforts.
How Millennials Differ From Other Generations
These consumers differ from the older generations. Here are a few behaviors that are common among millennials:
- Buying online - Millennials rarely shop in brick-and-mortar stores these days. Anything and everything they need can be found online - and instant gratification is a big driver for this segment.
- Paying bills online - Millennials choose to receive bills via email (if at all) and want payments to be auto-taken from their accounts, and rarely expect anything other than junk through snail mail. This means traditional direct marketing methods don't reach this generation.
- Embracing causes - These consumers are more concerned about causes than cost. If your company believes in a cause or system that this generation identifies with - they will bring their loyalty to your business.
- Streaming TV and magazines - The traditional television-watching, newspaper reading, and magazine subscription days are over. Millennials prefer to stream shows and articles on their devices, so they can watch or read at their own convenience, without commercials. They also believe they can learn anything from the internet, so long drawn-out courses or books seem like a hassle in comparison to reading blogs.
How to Cater Your Marketing to Millennials
Print ads, direct mail, billboards, radio, bus shelters, and even TV ads won’t resonate well with millennial consumers. They want to get to know a company - or find an instant solution for their issue. However, they want to go about this on their own terms and would rather learn about products through engaging and helpful content - like blogs - than through interruptive advertising. Consider the following tips to successfully market to the millennial generation:
- Create engaging content that offers something of value to consumers.
- Stay involved with the latest social media sites, but don’t bombard followers with sales messages. Instead, comment on relevant newsworthy items or share other impactful opinions.
- Be part of a cause that consumers care about, and give them an easy way to participate with you and share in your passions.
- Be mobile-friendly with everything you do, from your website to all other communications.
- Embrace video. Often, a catchy video captures the hearts and minds of viewers more effectively than a wordy article.
Millennials have brought a whole new way of shopping, communicating, and living to our society. In order to succeed in bringing awareness to your brand, you need to reach them where they are. You communications need to come through the channels they prefer.
Millennials don’t want to be sold; they want to build relationships. They want convenience, causes, and communication. Follow the tips above and you’ll be on your way to creating a marketing strategy that truly resonates with millennials.