Love them or hate them, Millennials (people born between 1977 and 1997 with age range of 18-37) have been driving topics in the marketing industry in most recent years.
We’d think that Millennials’ behaviour are being greatly shaped by digital, having grown up in a world where every aspect of their interactivity is consociated with technology. However, marketers in every industry are realising that this generation is shaping and influencing digital instead. They are the ones driving digital today.
Millennials’ impact turned out larger than expected, and is the largest generation we are marketing to in history today.
With Millennials taking up bulk of our current day workforce and Baby Boomers imminently retiring; Millennials will soon hold many purchasing positions, bearing the most purchasing power.
Understanding them should hence be a priority for all marketers in 2017, in order to successfully reach this target market- through the right channels on the right media platforms.
Businesses either work out the biggest trends that are shaping Millennials’ spending behaviour; build their strategies smartly and quickly in alignment, or find their brand get increasingly disconnected with the retailing market in forthcoming years.
Below, we list 5 ‘Marketing to Millennials’ tips every local business should quickly adapt to design a strategy that successfully reaches this discerning, game-changing target market.
5 ‘Marketing to Millennials’ Tips
Every Local Business Should Adapt To Reach This Formidable Generation
1. Understand The Psychology Of Millennials
It goes without saying that the first rule of marketing is to know your audience. The Millennials growing up online, have also been referred to as the ‘Digital Natives’. Understanding the values and buying-behaviour of this entire new generation has key implications for every retail marketer- from being attentively strategical when constructing the company’s image; to planning for campaign initiatives around how, when and where each time the brand is to be seen.
Research data and surveys have identified the core values driving Millennials as:
This is a generation that responds more to emotional and artistic narratives and embraces all forms of creativity output that appeals to their senses. Older consumers are found to be adapting to the Millennial mindset. Millennials have increasingly become the focus for many in the marketing industry, and for good reason.
Let’s take a look at some stats:
- 90% of Millennials are using smartphones, 93% are accessing the internet and 53% own tablets.
- 28% of Millennials aged 18 to 34 watching original programming within 3 days after airing, mostly on their laptops or mobile devices.
- Plenty of research statistics provide evidence of Millennials’ dependency on mobiles phones, both for research or actual sale purchases.
Combining functionality and aesthetic design that appeal to this newer generation is the challenge posed to all marketers and developers in every brand organisation today. From the statistical evidence above, evidently, industry players that adapt digital marketing tactics, make sound investments in appropriate digital platforms will find the most success.
2. Constantly Evolve Your Content Strategy
With the whole lot of pressure-cooking buzz on content marketing increasingly going on, you should be feeling the heat as an entrepreneur running a business (whether with a brick and mortar store or wholly online) for a content strategy that outlasts each year.
In 2017, engaging content is the only way to reach the Millennials.
Developing creative content that appeals to this targeted group’s emotions and imaginative interests should be top on the list of every local business trying to catch the attention of this new online generation.
Branded Content: FAUX OR NOT?
Branded content is described by industry insiders as “the practicing of investing in compelling content, whether to inform or entertain, that as a result is able to create an immersive experience for the consumer”. Branded content enables consumers to align themselves with the lifestyle and belief system that a company represents. While we are not sure if the entire branded content hype justifies a heavy investment of time and money, we sure see the underlying significance of this marketing tactic.
It is opposed to the outward-bound marketing and advertising techniques that Millennials are repelled by; but strategically focuses on providing a branded experience by aligning an image representation of the company with content that highly appeals to and resonates with a target audience group, instead.
It is wishful thinking for local businesses to still be relying on traditional advertising tactics and hope to haul any attention successfully from this digital bunch. New digital marketing techniques and strategies in this modern day are built around complex buyer-centric, inbound marketing processes that ‘pull’ consumers ‘inwardly’ with a persuasive web trategy, drawing digital users in according with what they would desire.
Unfamiliar with inbound metholodgy?
Keep up now with ’10 Powerful Inbound Marketing Charts’ we designed for great visual learning of these complex strategical processes at the forefront of digital marketing today.
Content Distribution We understand that is tough for marketers to place the right messaging and content on the right platforms these days, but sadly it’s become more than necessary, determining the success of every online business this day.
Combining strategies depending on the nature of one’s business will allow marketing teams to scale and automate their content towards better reachability and favourability of their audience.
For a full understanding on how to distribute content through the right channels and the right platform to reach the right audience, read our previous blog article “Why Companies In Singapore Struggle With Content Marketing”.
3. Incorporating Stronger Visual Imagery (AR and VR)
2016 saw AR (Augmented Reality) and VR (Virtual Reality) emerge as marketing platforms as they are shown to offer extensive digital marketing benefits, especially targeting this new digital generation. Digital content that catch the senses of ‘Digital Natives’ in this modern climate are AR, VR and immersive formats; allowing strong visual imagery and imagination that work in favour appealing to their buying-interests.
Distracting advertisements from TV, websites or other apps are a strict no-go for Millennials;
who have smartly learnt how to directly filter out disruptive content by using ad-blockers, or mentally blocking out all irrelevant advertising when browsing online.
Engaging Emotions Storytelling With VR
The explosive entrance of devices and smartphones into the market, well-equipping Millennials with the technology of high-power displays, have driven VR into a popular marketing platform brands adopt to share immersive experiences with their online audience.
- VR elicited 27% higher emotional engagement than in a 2D environment.
- It also induced 17% higher emotional engagement than a 360-degree video on a flat screen.
- VR viewers were emotionally engaged 34% longer than when they viewed the same content in 2D.
- They recorded to have a 16% longer engagement time than when they watched it in 360-degree video on a flat screen.
Engaging Consumers In Brand Campaigns With AR
AR via mobile devices is likely to be significant for many marketers.
- It offers great scope for how, when and where consumers can engage with campaigns, branded campaigns initiatives to promote a company’s branded product and its packaging.
- It also opens the door to technology such as visual search.
- AR also relies on existing mobile behaviours eg. mobile camera that users are extremely adept with.
- Local businesses should adapt this technology to develop new experiences to improve the buyer’s journey.
- AR and VR should be viewed as new opportunities businesses can harness for increased interaction and engagement.
4. Figuring Out Millennials And Social Media: Its More Complex Than We Think
Millennials are the social generation who headwaved the social media movement globally. Many local businesses are misssing the mark on leveraging social media, where Millennials thrive in this day (being constantly connected to their social circles online and on mobile.) When brands are marketing to Millennials, they have to be marketing to and on the networks and channels that they are on.
73% of millennials are reportedly influenced by the opinions of others before making a purchase. Forbes wrote: “62% of millennials say that if a brand engages with them on social networks, they are more likely to become a loyal customer. They expect brands to not only be on social networks, but to engage them.”
– January, 2015
This is where an effective social marketing strategy can brilliantly be worked to the advantage of your online business when incisively put together.
So, what should local businesses should take into account when social marketing to Millennials in 2017?
- Keep up to date with the changing preferences of millennial social media users. Anything real time is great.
- Have user generated content (UGC) in social marketing platforms and channels (eg. Integrate reviews or testimonials on your site and offer discounts or coupons for writing or sharing reviews).
Provide a social media environment that allows for crowdsourcing and input from their social circle.
- Involve Millennials in the creative process of your social marketing strategy. (eg. through live video content or messaging apps). Millennials want to “participate” with a brand’s marketing.
5. Practicing Authenticity: The Way To Millennials’ Hearts
The Millennial generation commends transparency and authenticity of advertising and marketing messages and are bigger believers or social justice than the previous generation.
Millennials want to align themselves with an authentic cause.
Are local business brands sufficiently practicising this when targeting the new Millennial purchasing generation?
4 Ways Local Business Brands Can Be More Authentic:
- Communicate with care
- Be transparent
- Be relevant with content
- Balance targeting and intrusion
There we’ve summed up your roadmap to marketing to Millennials. Remember, Millennials are consistently shaping digital marketing today and the future of it. Those who pick up on their research and buying traits quickly will be the ones who reap bountifully, having figured out this market generation, adeptly.
But wait, before you go on practicising these tips, you need to be completely kept up with this year’s e-commerce trends dominating the market with our ebook (free for download) below.