The Millennial Consumer
In 2018 millennials have the most spending power of any generation - the power is in our hands! We are the generation who are responding differently to marketing and advertising and because of this brands are trying extra hard to turn our heads and grab our attention.
So, what makes us so different? What do we actually want from brands and their marketing? It seems, brands need to be move fast and use technology in innovative ways to empower, surprise and delight us. I'll explain a little further...
Be forward thinking.
Make our lives easier not harder. We want convenience, but also inspiration (we’re not too fussy, promise!) Innovative communication is key, we want our attention to be grabbed and to easily distinguish who you are and what you are trying to say.
As a generation of social media savvy individuals who grew up with the internet, we expect sharable content that we can interact with. We like marketing experiences and to be included in your marketing strategies; we don’t want to miss out on anything (major FOMO generation). We want to be able to live and breath your marketing. We of want to be able to physically touch it, take a photo and share it on our social media channels.
Show us personalisation.
We can tell when a brand isn’t speaking directly to us and if the message isn’t 100% relevant we see it as a 'batch send' - a sales pitch. This kind of communication often leads to unsubscribes in email marketing and won't do your brand any favours. Using the right messaging at the right time is vital to communicating a key message to the correct recipient for ongoing engagement. Think about when we as millennials are online, what websites we have recently visited and where on the buyer journey a potential customer currently sits.
Authenticity comes from knowing your customers, their needs, and how to communicate that with transparency. Brands should focus on earning their referrals and recommendations, this is where brand influencers and advocates can come into play. We are likely to be heavily influenced based upon UGC created by strangers - it’s true! Whilst a lot of brands use UCG as a form of increasing their following and branding, UGC also pushes followers to consider a brands content and products through the imagery and reviews of others. Influencer marketing is based upon the economy of trust between brand and consumer. Being authentic is vital because we, as consumers need to know the endorser is living and breathing that brand so we can continue to trust them as much as we do the brand itself.
To appeal to millennials on social media, a brand or product must become a routine part of our conversations. A main goal of any brand strategy should be to create a positive buzz; to be talked about by its consumers. Simply having a presence on social media isn’t enough. A brand objective should be to become the topic of conversation (for all the right reasons). Social media is a great place to be social and communicate with an audience and to get involved in conversations.
To reflect the millennial demand, retailers need to customise their offering across all marketing channels in ways we as consumers want. This also means providing a personalised, better, faster and memorable service. Brands should focus on earning their referrals and recommendations (and not just buying or paying for them). Millennials often make purchase decisions based on what they see on Instagram, and the role of social media influencers goes way beyond this one network.