Marketing to Millennials: The Untapped Potential

The Millennial Mindset

As a new generation takes their place in the world it only makes sense that companies, big and small, begin marketing to them. However, many companies have opted to press the “pause button” on their millennial marketing campaigns because of failure by competitors in recent years. This is probably due to the overly colourful and ultra-hyped campaigns that are aimed at this generation. As a millennial myself, I can tell you that “This product will fix all your problems and make you Prozac happy” line isn’t going to work. As a brand, you need substance and honesty to impress me.

When marketing to millennials keep in mind that they are spoilt for choice. The internet allows them to visit any store and order whenever they like. Your brand is a drop in the ocean for them and recognising that is the first step to creating a better millennial campaign. So what does this generation want?

In a nutshell, we want honesty and sustainability from our brands. According to a Nielsen Global Survey: “Millennials (age 21-34) appear more responsive to sustainability actions. Among global respondents in Nielsen’s survey who are responsive to sustainability actions, half are Millennials; they represent 51 percent of those who will pay extra for sustainable products and 51 percent of those who check the packaging for sustainable labeling.”

Despite the idea that millennials are the “me generation”, this generation is very aware of their environmental and social impact and in turn they look for that in their brands.


Shopping Habits

With the introduction of social media millennials have more immediate access to the brands they like. 49% of Millennials will follow their favourite brands online as opposed to the 31% in other generations. They also interact more frequently with the brands they follow, 82% of millennials actively interact with brands as opposed to 61% in other generations.

  • Millennials are brand loyal and would rather not buy an item or pay more for an item if they believe in the spirit of that brand.
  • 53% of Millennials shop online in comparison to 28% in generation X and 10% in the Baby Boomers generation
  • On average millennials seek out at least one product review or product video when buying a product.
  • Millennials are far more likely to buy a product based on what they hear via word of mouth or from a trusted Influencer.


Maketing to a millennial

Your Millenial Marketing Plan


Create an experience

This is something the service industry really understands. When you work for a good restaurant or hotel the managers usually say the same thing. “Give your guests an experience and they will always come back for more!” To do that, you not only need to give them what they want but also what they didn’t know they wanted.

Don’t create a marketing strategy, create an experience. Make their lives more convenient while giving them a moment to remember and talk about. Remember that Millennials are more likely to tell their friends about you than any other generation. So make it a good story.


Focus on your sub-markets

Like any other generation, Millennials can be separated into sub-markets that you can focus on:

  • Young professionals – Fresh graduates and new employees.
  • Dependent adults – Young professionals living in someone else’s home (parents or close relatives)
  • Independent adults – Young professionals living on their own
  • Marrying Millennials – Millennials who are starting their own family


Don’t forget about video

This doesn’t just apply to video, but to any new trend in communication. Video, in particular, has seen a boom in the last year which has lead to its implementation in most social media sites.

  • Video – Video is a fast, easy way for you to convey information and display products.
  • Mobile – Making sure that you design for desktop and mobile will open you up to a bigger market.
  • Multiplatform and social media – Social media is a great way for you to be able to interact with your customers, creating an experience that will have them coming back for more.
  • Personalisation – This is where you can really get people to trust your brand. Millennials want to connect and build trust, by sharing an experience or having common ground you will be able to build a relationship.


Reviews will get you everywhere

Millennials actively seek confirmation from people around them, they are not afraid to ask if a product is worth buying. In order to build a reputation millennials will trust, you will need reviews. Get reviews from trusted Influencers like Youtubers and popular social personalities or by using sites like TripAdvisor. Using testimonials on your website also goes a long way.


To find out more about marketing to millennials you can view The Psychology of Successfully Marketing to Millennials [Infographic]


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