Through the ages, virtually any established business has had to overcome the challenge of appealing to a new demographic. With businesses that exist today, the millennial generation represents one of the most important consumer markets where significant focus needs to be placed. Millennials have diverse needs and wants to the generations that came before them, which can mean taking an innovative approach to marketing, product delivery, and service.
If your business is struggling to connect to the 18 to 30-year-old demographic, then the following advice could help you to make changes that allow you to become more appealing, increasing competitiveness in your market.
Forget About Your Perception of What the Millennial Generation Represents
Lazy, entitled… a desire for instant gratification. These are some of the words and phrases that are thrown around when millennials are stereotyped. If you want to appeal to millennials as a business, then you will need to eliminate any bias and negative perception that is held within your company and management structure. When you are able to remove any prejudices, and see the value of the largest market demographic, you’ll be better able to relate and create value that appeals to that market.
Be Transparent and Accountable, and Ensure the Integrity of Your Message
Millennials aren’t necessarily more ethical with stronger values than previous generations, but they are more likely to research your company, what you offer, and the validity of your branding message. If you’re using marketing fluff and exaggerated claims, there’s a high chance that your millennial audience is going to see right through it. Transparency is essential, and you’ll need to ensure that you are honest in how you market your products or services. If you make mistakes in your messaging or even your business activities, then you need to be ready to be accountable and address them.
Trust Comes from Your Products and Services, Not Your Message
If your marketing message is accurate and true to what you offer, then you’re going to have far more success with a millennial audience. However, for millennials, brand loyalty won’t come from reputation or past experiences, but instead from direct experience with your products or services. Aim to develop the best offering in your niche, and you’ll be in a better position to tap the enormous potential of millennial consumers. Keep in mind that millennials make up the largest consumer demographic that the United States has ever seen. With an estimated 92 million compared to the 61 million of generation X, and the 77 million made up by the baby boomers, you’ll soon understand how important it is to gain the trust of this demographic.
Develop an Offering That is More Affordable
According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, millennials have less money to spend than the generations before them. This means that if you want to capture their attention and ultimately their business, your offering will need to be as affordable as it is honest and compelling. Smaller incomes don’t mean that millennials don’t want to spend, but they will want to see products and services that offer competitive pricing with a strong value proposition. In 2015, The Neilson Company estimated that millennials were spending around $200 billion in the United States per year, so there’s still opportunity to create a healthy business based more on volume rather than individual unit profitability.
Embrace Online and Consumer to Consumer Marketing
Millennials are more connected than previous generations, especially with the power of social media and emerging web 3.0 concepts. Make it easy for consumers to engage with each other and discuss your offerings. Don’t rely on social media alone, and instead try to incorporate review and testimonial systems into your own platforms. DRTV is the best growing way to provide opportunities for consumers to share your content and products, to help generate buzz and validity for your brand. The internet is the most valuable storefront and marketing platform for the millennial group, so you need to make sure that you have a strong web presence that is both accessible and interactive.
While some of your strategies with millennials will be new to you, the basic marketing premise remains the same. Understand your audience, appeal to their values, and offer them what they want at a price that they can afford. Taking the time to make slight changes will ensure that your company is ready to serve the largest group of consumers that has ever existed.