Adapt Marketing Strategies to Millennials or Fade Into Obscurity
Over the past few years, established corporations and large brands have been in denial about millennials, the increasingly large and dynamic segment of the consumer marketplace. We’ve tried to change their behaviors and tendencies, instead of adapting our own strategies to meet their preferences. Well, we’re now at a crucial turning point where you need to give in or step away.
Meet Millennials Where They Are
As marketers, we have to remember that generational variances exist from one generation or demographic to the next. However, for some reason, millennials seem to have more discrepancies and differences than any generation in the past. They do everything differently, which is scary for businesses that aren’t prepared to adapt.
Take something as simple as grocery shopping as an example. At first glance, you would assume that everyone shops in a similar manner – but this isn’t necessarily true. Millennial grocery shopping habits are distinctly different.
They look at grocery shopping as a social activity, not just a necessary chore. They frequently consult others – friends, family members, or significant others – during the shopping trip for guidance and preferences. Millennials prefer to shop without a budget and will frequently purchase private label goods to save money. They are also less likely to clip coupons and favor smaller boutique stores to large supermarkets.
As an internet marketer, why should you care about how millennials shop for groceries? Well, it’s not the grocery shopping that should pique your interest, but the truths behind the process. If millennials view something as simple, mundane, and straightforward as grocery shopping in a different light, can you imagine how unique their attitudes are towards social media, content marketing, web design, and other aspects of online marketing?
3 Tips for Effective Millennial Marketing
When it comes to marketing, you need to really hone in on who your target audience is, what pain points they have, and why they’re interacting with your brand. If you’re working with millennials, you’ll discover that they are a totally unique demographic that needs to be reached in an entirely new way. Here are some strategies and tips that may help:
1. Be Omnipresent with Social Media
Saying millennials love social media is an understatement. According to research, people between the ages of 18 and 36 spend almost 18 hours per day exposed to different types of media. Roughly 71 percent say they engage in social media every single day.
While a lot of this is passive consumption, the fact remains that millennials always have social media close by. As a marketer, this means you need to leverage social media at all hours of the day. Don’t just post something in the morning, check out for eight hours, and then review the results in the afternoon. You need to be omnipresent. Check out some of these tools to learn how you can schedule posts throughout the day.
2. Utilize Natural Content Marketing
Did you know that only 6 percent of millennials consider online advertising credible? If you spend a lot of time in paid advertising, this is a depressing statistic. And while we could spend lots of time arguing about why this is true, the ultimate takeaway is that you need to leverage natural marketing efforts.
The best way to create natural and meaningful engagement opportunities with millennial customers is by investing in quality content marketing. Whether it’s a YouTube channel, on-site blog, guest blogging, authoring e-books, or anything in between, you need to subtly attach your name to content that addresses the pain points of your target audience. You’ll see much higher returns than if you just invest in PPC ads and other forms of online advertising.
3. Keep it Simple
It may seem like an odd desire for a group that’s known for multitasking, but millennials really just want to keep things simple. This especially applies when it comes to web design.
Look at brands that are popular with millennials. We’re talking about Apple, Uber, Airbnb, and other similar companies. Now, visit their websites and take notes. All of them have extremely simple, yet highly immersive on-site experiences. This is what millennials desire. They don’t want websites with lots of content and gimmicky features. They want streamlined navigation that engages from start to finish.
Millennials Must Be a Priority
Millennials are quickly becoming a force to reckon with in the consumer marketplace. They are the single most important group in the workforce. Furthermore, by 2018 they’re expected to overtake boomers. By 2025, they’ll have $8 trillion worth of annual net income. And as their buying power and influence increases, the burden for marketers to respond with appropriate action will become heavier.
The smartest thing you can do is to make millennials a priority right now. If you wait until 2018, 2020, or 2025 to target millennial consumers, you’ll find yourself throwing away money in an attempt to chase the market leader. Millennials must be a priority – starting now!