Millennials have a reputation. They’re seen as fickle, unwilling to spend, disengaged, and apathetic about products and services. They are said to have attention spans that are so short that they’re impossible to market to. They’re even said to be responsible for killing industries and products and that have thrived for generations. So, what is the real truth about Millennials? These broad statements about this generation miss the mark, and if you’re going to market to them, you first have to dismiss the stereotypes. They’re tech-savvy in a way that the world has never seen, and they can sense when you’re being inauthentic in your approach. However, despite the hype, it is possible to market to Millennials and turn them into engaged, enthusiastic consumers. These tips will help.

Get Real about Millennials

Millennials are not a monolith. The generation includes people born as early as 1981 and as late as 1997, so some Millennials have barely graduated college, while others are pushing 40. There are roughly 80 million of them in the U.S. alone, and they do spend. In fact, Millennials spend about $600 billion every year. Therefore, marketing to Millennials is not only possible but can also generate big returns.

Millennials are the first generation that grew up with the internet, and it has impacted the way they communicate on a basic level. Your old playbook may not work, but there is a playbook that does, so don’t give up on targeting this potentially profitable segment of your market.

Make Marketing Interactive

Millennials are distrustful of mass marketing campaigns that require them to accept someone’s message passively. However, they are highly responsive to marketing efforts that get them involved. For example, running a social media campaign that asks for people to tag posts about your brand is a great way to encourage engagement with your products.

As a bonus, as they share, they are helping you make your marketing efforts more effective by spreading the word for you and putting your brand in front of their followers. Millennials trust recommendations from friends and family. Turning customers into brand evangelists through interactive marketing efforts is great for your business.

Realize That Use, Not Ownership, Motivates Millennials

Millennials care less about owning items and more about having access to use them. This idea has propelled everything from car share and bike share services to fashion rental services. As such, enticing them with the idea of owning something is not an effective strategy.

To market to Millennials, don’t focus on buying and ownership. Instead, focus on using and experience. As much as possible, gear your marketing of your products and services toward things that people can enjoy as experiences. That way, Millennial customers will be more intrigued about what you’re offering.

Find a Cause and Stand Behind It

Millennials are a socially conscious generation. They are more likely to engage with brands that have a cause beyond making money. The success of brands like Toms and Bobs show that having a social motivation can be enough to make Millennials choose your brand over a competitor that isn’t as socially engaged.

When you choose a cause, it is important that it does truly resonate with you. Your cause should be a frequent part of your marketing, and your team should be able to speak to the cause with passion and knowledge. Authenticity matters when you are trying to market to Millennials. Cynically using a cause you don’t believe in to market your brand may backfire.

Differentiate Your Market

You can’t market to Millennials as though they were a homogeneous demographic. If you know you want to target Millennials, then go through the same process of creating marketing personas and identifying the characteristics of each group. These subsets of the Millennial market will respond to different things. After all, marketing to parents in their late 30s is much different than marketing to recent college grads. Craft your campaigns accordingly.

The digital marketing team at Pennington Creative knows how to craft content that resonates with Millennials on the platforms they use the most. Talk to our digital content specialists in Tucson about building a marketing campaign that will draw Millennials to your brand. Or ask how we can help you reach whichever demographic is in your sights. Get in touch with us today to get started!

About the Author

Heather - Digital Marketing Specialist, Copywriting
Heather McDonald

Digital Marketing Specialist, Copywriting