At present, Millennials (a part of Generation Y) make up the largest part of the UK’s work force. As the Baby Boomer Generation have reached retirement, Millennials are recognised by marketers for their enormous purchasing power. Although most are still bogged down in student loans or the cost of starting a family, brands realise the importance of their potential in the long-run and ultimately their influence on the bottom line.
Definitions have varied between researchers and industry experts however most put millennials as those aged between 18 and 34 or born between 1980 and 2000.
Like each generation that came before, Millennials have their own set of characteristics that make them unique. A recent study by Google found that 87% of millennials have their mobile with them day and night. They are also a generation that reached adulthood during one of the largest financial crises in recent times.
Brands cannot afford to ignore this knowledgeable, tech-savvy, spend conscious group of consumers.
Here are 5 key tips to marketing for Millennials:
Be in the know
The most important thing to remember is that Millennials are not the same. Unlike generations before them, Millennials can’t be placed into simple demographic groups. Your marketing campaign needs to meet the requirements of the most diverse generation to have existed. You’ll find them in every social class, industry – even gender is becoming fluid.
It’s easy to think that this generation can be categorised – they are glued to smart devices, obsessed with social platforms and are more open-minded about social issues like Climate Change. In reality, Millennials don’t tend to follow societal norms. Having grown up with technology and the ability to access information at their fingertips, they conduct research and develop their own opinions.
Brands need to focus their marketing strategies on getting to know their customers and engaging with them on a personal level. Maintaining a contact record that contains just their name, phone, and email address won't suffice. Millennials expect you to know who they are, what they buy from you, how often they contact you and even their favourite foods or football team.
CRM has evolved, no longer exclusively used as a contact management system, Atreemo looks to integrate customer support, sales and marketing to give brands a 360° view of their relationship with a customer.
In a recent study, Return Path found that 52% of Millennials expect brands to know their birthday and 28% expect to be alerted on nearby store openings. Millennials have shown to have high expectations from their marketing experiences. Personalisation allows you to show that you have understood the customer’s behaviour or preferences and are rewarding them with content that is relevant and they care about.
Ensure your marketing message resonates with millennials with personalisation that follows through all aspects of their customer journey – from the email, to landing pages and other online messaging. Track their behaviour online and use this to create a unique experience and relationship with your product or brand. If they haven’t completed a purchase, send them a reminder of their abandoned basket. Don’t forget, they’ll be expecting it!
You should also consider the device being used. Millennials are always connected, sometimes to multiple devices and they often interact with businesses online or through tablets and mobile phones. Tailor your communications for different platforms by ensuring your marketing messages render well across the board.
Having grown up with technology, Millennials are comfortable in the online space and indulge in a sharing culture. This has meant that marketers have been quick to ensure they have a social presence, but not every social media site is going to be right for you. Identify your customer segments and think about which platform they are likely to interact with.
More often than not, Millennials want to feel heard, with many social media sites now becoming an outlet for consumers to share opinions and feedback on the brands they interact with. Often marketers aren’t setup for handling complaints, especially on such a public stage. Make sure your customer services and marketing teams work cohesively to respond to these social interactions. Atreemo’s Sentiment tracking could help you to monitor phrases or keywords your target audience use on your social pages. Remember however, Millennials are a knowledgeable group and their sharing culture means that they aren’t interested in interacting with a faceless entity but getting to the heart of your company. Your goal should be to show the people behind the brand and giving them a (friendly) voice.
Above all, Millennials value authenticity. They’re more likely to listen to a fellow consumer than respond to marketing messages. This has been especially prevalent in the fashion industry where brands are now employing ‘influencers’ to endorse their products.
Marketers need to soften their sales techniques with a generation that are well-informed and loyalty is hard to gain. Millennials are accustomed to jumping on a search engine and researching their options before making purchasing decisions. Brands will need to focus on streamlining the sales journey and focusing on convenience. For example, Cross Country Trains send regular emails pre-populated with their customers’ favourite journeys, with the lowest price point available and allow them to click directly through to the booking process.
Millennials trust content that they feel is authentic. They scour the internet, blogs and social media in search of the opinions of real product users. When selecting a younger audience for marketing campaigns, use your data and analytics to drive the content strategy. Why not share product reviews or link through to a vlog of recent feedback on your service? Millennials want to feel like your content was created with their interests and not their wallet, in mind. Find the right balance between brand awareness and product promotion to ensure Millennials feel encouraged and not manipulated.
As recognised, Millennials are interested in having their say. A recent study by Elite Daily found that 42% of millennials are interested in helping companies develop future products and services. Greater involvement in the product development process could help to guarantee not only the products success in the market but also establish a loyal base.
Collaboration is also essential within your organisation. Quite often Sales, Marketing and Customer service teams work in silos. Customers however, view your brand as a single entity and will expect their entire history as a shopper to be shared across the business. For example, a customer’s contract might be up for renewal but the Sales team are unaware that they have reported dissatisfaction with the customer support team and are thinking about not renewing. A pushy call from the Sales department could make Millennials feel like your company is incompetent. This is especially important as they can be very unforgiving and you can be sure that they will be sharing their opinion via social media for the world to see.
Using a comprehensive CRM platform can help your company reach this generation and improve not only your sales, but your reputation as well. If you’re interested in finding out how we can help you to connect with this important audience, please contact one of our expert team.