Defined as people born between the late 1980s and early 2000s, millennials are one of the largest and most influential consumer bases, with an estimated $200 billion to spend each year in the U.S. alone.
As a result, brands are allocating more and more of their marketing efforts into understanding the mindset of the millennial consumer, and adapting to new technologies and methods that will best speak to this key demographic.
Here are a few common trends among millennial consumers across the globe, as well as suggestions to tailor your marketing strategies in order to have the most impact on the so-called “digital generation.”
Millennials Are Mobile
With the advent of smartphone and tablet technology, 87 percent of millennials report using between two and three devices every day.
This digital lifestyle, especially the ability to do almost anything from a handheld device, affects everything from social interactions to shopping, to research and learning. Optimize your mobile website and consider creating a user-friendly smartphone app in order to capture the greatest potential number of millennial consumers.
Social Reigns Supreme
Compared to older generations, millennials are also more likely to use social media, and they expect brands and companies to keep up with the latest social media trends.
According to Forbes, 62 percent of millennials say they are more likely to buy a product or use a service if the brand engages with them on social networks, such as Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. However, engagement doesn’t mean a few posts here and there or using a popular hashtag to get attention—it’s an active, ongoing conversation that takes a lot of work and commitment to build.
It’s worth noting that popular social networking platforms differ around the world—for example, Kakao in South Korea and Weibo in China—so be sure to concentrate your marketing efforts on the right channels.
Millennials Value Genuine, Trustworthy Brands
Millennials can spot spammy native advertising posts from a mile away, and they have become desensitized to a lot of the banner ads popping up on their most frequently visited web pages.
So, what will cut through the noise and make them pay attention to your company? Genuine interest and engagement.
Content that is personalized or tailored to their interests, rather than a one-size-fits-all approach, is more likely to earn their trust as well as their dollars. Traditional advertising is less effective with millennials, who will often skip through TV commercials or fail to notice a print advertisement.
However, brands that solicit feedback from their millennial customers—and then use that feedback to improve their product or service, or the way they market it—show that they are listening and are more likely to increase their millennial following.
Because about 95 percent of millennials consider recommendations from friends to be the most reliable source of information when choosing a product or service, having a loyal customer base will lead to more clients due to word-of-mouth.
Something Bigger Than Themselves
When marketing to millennials, it’s not enough to provide a great product or service. When making a purchase, millennials want to be part of something greater, something that they believe will make a difference.
Almost 75 percent of millennials believe that social responsibility is important and that companies should give back to society rather than just focusing on the bottom line.
A millennial consumer might be willing to pay $3 for a regular cup of coffee, but they might be more willing to pay $4 to your competitor for a cup of coffee that is certified fair-trade. Give back when you can.
Ready to put your newfound knowledge into practice? Contact United Language Group to optimize your marketing campaigns for millennials around the world.