For the last few years, marketers have been stumbling over themselves in an attempt to get the attention of Millennials. This is understandable since there are now 2 billion Millennials around the world and have a global buying power of  $2.45 trillion. The focus on this demographic will only grow in the future, as it is expected that their collective spending will outnumber all other demographics starting this year. The fact is, if you are selling anything other than hearing aids and Ensure, you need to be putting a lot of time, money and focus into marketing for Millennials.

Unfortunately for advertisers, marketing to Millennials is unlike any other demographic in history. For the most part, they reject everything about traditional advertising, and this is forcing companies to reassess everything they once believed about targeted marketing for a demographic. While Millennials are a diverse group who value individuality, there are some techniques that marketers have found to be successful with the group as a whole. In this article, we will share with you some of these techniques and how you can create an effective marketing campaign geared at this large, valuable pool of consumers.

Understanding Millennials

The first step in any targeted marketing campaign is to get a better understanding of your audience. Unfortunately, Millennials are difficult to define as a group. While the definition varies slightly according to different sources, the general consensus is that Millennials are the demographic between the ages of 18-34 (although that same range has been used to define them for several years). However, within that specific age group, there are men, women, singles, parents, single parents, students, homeowners, many different races and countless other subgroups into which Millennials could also be divided.

The point is that Millennials are people. Not only are they just as different and varied as anyone else, they value their differences and individuality more than any other group in history. This is one reason why Millennials are such a difficult group to reach by marketers. Not only that, Millennials are known to be very non-traditional in the way they view the world and in their purchasing habits.

The Digital Generation

A study done in 2014 found that 84 percent of Millennials do not trust traditional advertising, and marketers will need to think outside the box to reach them. To understand Millennials is to understand a unique segment of people who value useful content over pushy advertising. They have grown up in the Information Age, where a world of information has always been readily available and easily accessible. They are also known as “digital natives,” and most have known no other way of life that was not heavily influenced by technology.

Content Marketing

Millennials spend an average of 25 hours per week online, and they crave content-driven media. They are much more likely to respond to information found in a blog, helpful video or eBook than any form of traditional advertising medium. They want content that they feel addresses their needs in mind. They want to feel as though companies are trying to build a relationship with them, as opposed to simply going on a one-night stand with their wallets. More importantly, they want information that they can relate to and that they feel is authentic. In fact, 84 percent of Millennials say that user-generated content has at least some influence on what they buy.

Creating Brand Evangelists

Millennials are constantly connected to a large social group of online friends and advisors, many of whom have similar purchasing habits. Advertisers can use this to their advantage by making brand evangelists out of their customers. One study found that 70 percent of Millennials feel that it is their responsibility to share a feedback after a positive or negative experience with companies. Just as importantly, 73 percent say that it is important to read the opinions of others before purchasing a product. This creates a form of organic advertising that marketers can take advantage of; a kind of internet word-of-mouth.

Authenticity Matters

One of the main reasons why Millennials do not trust traditional advertising is the fact that they grew up in an age of dishonest or misleading marketing coming at them from every angle. This created an inherent dislike of advertising, but they will be more loyal than any other group to a brand or company that they feel they can trust. McDonald’s “Your Questions” campaign was a perfect example of unusually honest marketing that was wildly successful. It also incorporated customer participation into the campaign, creating a dialogue with consumers and allowing them to feel that their voice matters. These are additional elements that are crucial to marketing to Millennials.

The Omni Approach

Most Millennials are constantly connected to the internet in one way or another. They use their computers, tablets and phones to view content, share with friends and make purchases. It is important that advertisers take an omnichannel marketing approach that will enable them to reach Millennials in many different ways.

For more digital marketing advice and assistance, give us a call at Grow Digital Marketing! Our team of experts will be able to advise you accordingly and help create a bespoke plan, tailored to your business!