Drowning in student loans doesn't stop Millennials from spending, so there shouldn't be any excuses from companies as to why you can't connect with them.
The Millennial generation is comprised of 80 million Americans, making up a fourth of the nation’s population and representing 200 billion in annual buying power. Regardless of who they are, with those numbers and that buying power any savvy business owner should be scrambling for a piece of that pie.
Not only are they a quarter of the market, but they are trendsetters across all industries with a huge amount of influence over older generations. To complicate things, traditional methods of advertising are about as effective as a smoke signal during a hurricane when trying to reach the selfie generation.
How does one reach this seemingly unreachable market and crack the Millennial mystery?
Are you even surprised that the highest educated and most diverse generation is unaffected by traditional forms of advertising? You shouldn’t be. In a recent study, a whopping 1% of millennials said that they are compelled to trust a brand more through traditional advertising.
Older generations rely on traditional media for news and information. Millennials on the other hand are all about skipping commercials and ignoring ads rendering traditional media avenues obsolete. They instead prefer to get their information from social media and blogs.
Authenticity Over Content
The Millennial generation doesn’t care what it is, they want to know its authentic before they even consider the content. In fact 43% of Millennials surveyed said that they prefer to trust a company before they even worry about the content. This is one of the main reasons blogs are a main source of information for millennials. Blogs are generally run by an individual, making them appear more trustworthy and authentic, explaining why a majority of Millennials prefer blogs over traditional media. Millennials want to feel informed and involved, not marketed to.
They Want to Engage
If you haven’t heeded the social media call - its time. 62% of Millennials say that if a brand engages with them on social media they are much more likely to become a loyal customer. Millennials are active and eager to engage with bands on social media and even expect those companies to be there to engage with them. Furthermore, nearly 95% of millennials believe their friends to be the most credible sources. If you can penetrate the ranks and get millennials talking about your product or service, it will do better than any traditional forms of advertising. The best way to get in front of the millennial crowd is by having the millennials spread the word for you.
Mobile Marketing is a Must
Just like with any demographic, if you want to reach them, you need to market in the right places. 85% of Millennials own smartphones, if you’re after the Millennial crown clearly that is the kingdom to be conquered. To win the war of the devices its all about optimization. Are your landing pages optimized for mobile devices?Make sure you have clear call to actions with fast load times. Once you’re site is optimized for smart devices, look into mobile marketing options, but before paying money make sure you have exhausted your free options first.
Loyal till the End
Another key difference between generations is that Millennials identify more personally with brands than older generations do. They want to be connected on an emotional level with a lot of the brands they associate with, this generation wants the brands to act as an extension of their values and status. It will take more than high quality products to win this lot over. Companies need to express the traits and affiliations Millennials want to project through their actions, storytelling and endorsements.
When it comes right down to it, this is a massive generation – the largest ever. Not engaging with them, not finding ways to understand and relate to them, not adhering to their expectations, it is the easiest and fastest way for a brand to fail.
Check out another blog, Go Mobile or Go Home, to make sure you're on the right path to mobile optimization.