More than a fad: Tips for millennial marketing. Part 1
Millennials are changing the world. Born between 1981 and 1996, this group is fast becoming the largest population in the world. They wield a tremendous amount of purchase power, occupying a rapidly expanding market share that brands and marketers everywhere are eager to capture.
But millennials are anything but a monolith. Exemplifying incredible cultural, social, and economic differences, this generation is reshaping everything, from entertainment to politics, in their complex, fluid image. For them, diversity is the future. They are also more tech-savvy than their predecessors, leading lives heavily mediated by the internet. Connected and stridently independent at once, they are individuals who must be engaged on their own terms.
To capture their hearts and minds in the age of big data, marketers need to distill the ceaseless churn of information to deliver individualized experiences that resonate, across the noise and rift of social media and the online/offline divide.
Engaging with this emerging generation on their own terms will yield tremendous returns. This two-part series cuts through the misconceptions and hype, offering digital marketers advice on connecting with their millennial customers—like, REALLY connecting with them.
Going viral is not “it”
Millennials’ penchant for virality is one of the most commonly cited characteristics and one of the least examined. Marketers can easily grab every wisp of buzz and contort their content in its image, anxious to provoke a response. Creating content that resonates builds a new audience, but hopping on every trending topic, not so much. There are few things more obvious than a brand trying too hard to go viral.
Instead of valuing virality above everything else, be frank about your goals—and plot your strategies and metrics well. Invest your resources wisely and only leverage trends relevant to your brand and chosen audience. A clear and steadily rising click-thru rate, for instance, is often far preferable to trending in all the wrong places.
Find a brand voice that is uniquely, and honestly yours. Snarky is not everybody’s cup of tea. Develop your narrative and communications around and with this group with authenticity, not with a corporate caricature of them. They want a brand that actually offers them value, that truly walks the talk.
Consumption as a statement
Purchases are no longer just purchases. They leave real impact on the world, and for millennials, they are expressions of who they are. It’s more important than ever that brands commit to ethical, sustainable practices and processes that ensure transparent exchanges. Millennials want their consumption to better the world, not ruin it.
But nowadays brands must navigate the trickier terrain of discourse as well. It’s a delicate balancing act. Without properly understanding the divergent concerns of the millennial generation, they can easily alienate hard-earn customers, incurring backlash and ending up with a tarnished image. However, strategic, but genuine, commitment to relevant issues can establish lasting bonds. Think about the amazing outpouring of brand support for women and Pride, for instance, and how it made sometimes excluded customers feel welcome and encouraged to interact with brands. Recognition fuels engagement.
Individualizing diverse experiences
The millennial umbrella encompasses everyone from fresh college graduates and struggling early professionals to young parents in their mid-career ascent. It’s an extraordinarily diverse group with wide-ranging interests, purchase patterns, and digital behavior across a variety of channels. They are more than a number.
Individualized experiences are a given for this audience, and meeting their needs begins with data. But its volume and fragmentation make a manual approach impossible. One shudders at the idea of manually digging up social media for every tangentially relevant conversation. This is where marketing automation comes in.
A robust platform consolidates a wide variety of siloed data source, mapping out the multiple identities of the restless consumer. The results? A unified view of the individual customer, one that is augmented at every interaction. Rather than a tone-deaf exchanges, marketers are empowered to recognize each consumer from the first click, orchestrating contextually relevant journey where the millennial consumer can feel valued, where the sales pitch is welcomed.
Millennial marketing that makes a difference
Millennials seek acknowledgement. They want lasting connections, unique experiences to add up to something. To connect with this audience, brands face many obstacles: misunderstandings, rising expectations, mounting data silos, the explosion of touchpoints, and systems that are barely up to the task. But coupled with a genuine effort towards knowing this generation, a real-time omnichannel marketing automation platform is the start of a new era in millennial marketing.
The next blog in this two-part series addresses the issue of engaging millennials in an omnichannel world: the importance of seamless journeys, the potentials of —and evident need for—new channels, and the capabilities marketers must establish to bridge the divide.
Wonder how Resulticks can help you forge trusted connections with a younger audience beyond the noise and buzz? Contact us at Or schedule a demo today.