3 Tips for Marketing to Millennials

The month of August signals the end of summer and school will soon be back in session. While you may have been out of the classroom for a while, that doesn’t mean there isn’t more information you should digest to help grow your business.

At 898 Marketing, we receive emails and messages through social media from companies asking our opinions and for our assistance about a topic we all should be doing our homework on: marketing to millennials.

Not only do millennials make up the largest demographic of individuals doing business and research online, but they have more spending power than any other age group in the United States, according to a 2017 article published by Forbes Magazine.

By the end of 2019, millennials will outnumber baby boomers as the largest generation in the United States, according to Pew Research. These “kids” are not going anywhere and, as a millennial myself, we are only going to keep growing in terms of the impact we have on businesses.

If you haven’t started marketing to this demographic because you think you “don’t get it,” what follows are three tips to help you get to the front of the class and grow your business with this demographic.

Authenticity is Key

If you want to appeal to millennials, you have to be authentic with your marketing message and story.

We have grown up with social media so it is no surprise this channel heavily influences our buying decisions. Millennials are most loyal to brands that provide a way to improve the lives of their customers with informative content.

Be a thought leader who we can rely on for anything when it comes to your business or industry and get working on including us in that process by becoming your brand ambassador.

For us, we actually trust content more from our friends or family above all other forms of brand messaging you might put out in the marketplace.

Not convinced?

Take a look at some of these findings from a recent study done by Jupiter Research on the influence social media has on millennials’ purchasing decisions:

  • 81% are influenced by posts from friends/followers.
  • 78% of millennials use a company based on their posts.
  • 74% of millennials research a company on social media before making their decision.
  • More than half of the decision-making process is done by a millennial before actually buying the product.

Content produced by other consumers of your products or services is far more interesting and relevant than content produced by your company.

Mobile First

If you want to reach millennials, you better be mobile friendly.

Mobile is the primary form of interaction for our generation online and through social channels, surpassing a computer, with more than 90% of us owning at least one mobile device.

If you don’t have a mobile- friendly website, you don’t matter to us. But more than that, make sure you are engaging with us on mobile-friendly social channels such as Instagram and Snapchat.

Finally, emotion is key to appealing to our generation. In a mobile environment, there is no better way to capture emotion than through the use of emoji.

And while many believe emojis are a sign of the devolution of society, resorting back to times of hieroglyphics to communicate, emojis are two times more effective in communicating with millennials over text.

Develop a custom emoji keyboard or embrace emoji in your content that can be easily communicated and shared in a mobile environment.

Experiences Matter

Experiences matter more to millennials than tangible items. While discounts and free things are nice, for us, being a part of a unique experience or event is what millennials value most.

Each day, millennials are bombarded with over 2,000 outbound marketing messages from TV, radio, billboards and other traditional and digital marketing channels.

We are looking for something different. For example, 72% of millennials would rather spend their discretionary income on travel, music events and one-of-a-kind events than buying a tangible item such as a house or a car, according to research from The Harris Group.

Taking it a step further, posting about those cool experiences is often perceived as being more valuable than the experience itself. Millennials will use social media to boast about attending an event or experience that others miss out on, especially through the use of video.

Video is the most authentic way to document experiences, so be sure to use video to engage and share information. Videos are shared 12 times more than posts with pictures, links or text.

While many businesses look at millennials as the class clowns, we are quickly becoming the most popular kids in business.

The next generation of customers for your business is going to take a different approach to how they want to hear, engage and experience your business’ offerings.

Following these tips will ensure you pass the test with millennials and become their new favorite trend.

Copyright 2024 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.