Millennials: How To Connect With This Key Demographic
Maybe the problem is your marketing not your audience.
That’s what SDL’s March 2014 survey of 300 US respondents aged 18-36 (specifically those born between 1978 and 1996) entitled “Understanding Millennials” indicates. Roughly 1 in 4 people in the US are millennials.
1. Be present where I am (Millennials that is)
Millennials love their smartphones. This finding isn’t new. Millennials touch their smartphones 45 times per day on average.
Actionable Millennial Marketing Tip: Provide consistent cross platform communications to reach millennials.
64% of millennials expect seamless interaction regardless of channel or device.
2. Reach out and touch your millennial audience.
Millennials don’t want more of your marketing. They want to be surprised and delighted. What’s old is new again. AT&T used the slogan “Reach Out and Touch Someone” in their 1979 television commercial.
Actionable Millennial Marketing Tip: Make your prospects and customers special offers and communications. Think birthday offers and cards.
3. Make me an offer I can’t refuse on social media.
Millennials connect with businesses on social media. Over 60% seek discounts on social media while 16% don’t connect with businesses on social media (that’s 1 out of 6 millennials does NOT want to connect with you via social media). Engage with millennials on the social media platforms that they frequent in a consistent manner. (Here’s more research and marketing tips on millennials social media shopping behavior.)
Actionable Millennial Marketing Tip: Create special offers targeted to your followers on social media that provide value to them! To get optimal results, make them in real time where appropriate and you can handle them across channels.
4. Provide content where and when I want it.
Millennials use a variety of different digital platforms and channels to gather information. If your content was digitally delivered, they saw it that day.
There’s no one clear way to reach this demographic. This means that you must know your target audience and their content consumption habits very well to contribute useful content where they spend their time.
About 50% of millennials gather their information from their Facebook newsfeed. This means that your content must compete with P2P content that’s more relevant to their lives.
Interestingly, YouTube ranks on a par with Twitter, Google and email. These platforms are used by about a third of respondents. Given YouTube’s ranking as the second largest search engine and its video format, it should be a must on every marketer’s content creation and distribution list.
Actionable Millennial Marketing Tip: Distribution your content across a variety of different platforms to reach your target audience.
5. Skip the Big Brother approach to capturing marketing-related data on millennials.
Millennials not only know you’re watching them, but also know what information you’re tracking. Cookies, history, browsing, email, address and purchase rank highest. 40% of millennials can identify specific digital information marketers track.
Actionable Millennial Marketing Tip: Be open and transparent about the information you collect and how you gather it. Stick to email addresses and ad tracking. Stay away from personal information including facial recognition, phone numbers, browser information and location!
If you’re marketing to millennials, throw out your old marketing playbook.
Skip the traditional campaigns—millennials want marketers to connect with them on social media and other channels on their schedule, not yours.
Build trust with your prospects and customers over time by being open and transparent because millennials gather digital information.
What has your experience marketing to millennials? What are your recommendations?
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According to research by Nielsen, 70 percent of global consumers trust online consumer reviews and rate reviews as the second most trusted form of advertising. And according to BazaarVoice, when it comes to trust, marketers may as well eliminate their own brand websites as a fountain of customer trust as only 16 percent of US consumers said they trust the content on a brand's website compared to the 51 percent who trust content generated by other users.
Today's digital currency is arguably authenticity, and what attracts customers - especially the digitally dependent, savvy millennial - is not just content. It is the delivery of authentic, unvarnished content from their peers.
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- Millennials to Marketers [Research]
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