The Essential Guide to Millennial Marketing – Part 1

Millennial Marketing is an important part of any marketer’s know-how today, as the choices made by consumers in the 18-35 age group are set to dominate the market

As a generation that has an annual spending power of over $800 million, the Millennial Generation is a major influence on the economy. Not only does this generation have enormous spending  power now, it is also likely to get more influential as its earning capacity increases.  In this four-part  series, we’ll look at how brands can create compelling marketing campaigns by keeping in mind the Millennial lifestyle and choices.

What is the Millennial Generation?

Before we go any further, we need to understand what the Millenial Generation is.  As is commonly understood, this is the generation born between 1977 and 2000. This generation is usually defined as being, technology-reliant, image-driven, adept at multi-tasking, adaptable, confident, information-rich and impatient.

An important economic characteristic of this generation is their considerable influence over their parents’ purchasing decisions.  This is what gives the Millennials their tremendous indirect spending power, besides their direct spending power. Other important facts about the Millennials are:

  • There are more than 105 million Millenials, making this generation larger than the Baby Boomers and Generation X
  • Many Millennials are digital natives, that is, people who have been interacting with digital technologies since an early age
  • Millennials are enthusiastic participants, besides being avid content creators and users. They want to assert their choices more in the market.
  • Millennials seek peer affirmation, and are very involved with social media platforms
  • Millennials are not a homogenous cohort
  • Millenials are particularly averse to anything they perceive as ‘marketing’ and prefer to ‘uniquely discover’ the things they like. It’s important to a Millennial to be perceived as someone who can see through hype and exaggeration.

3 Essentials of Millennial Marketing:

From the facts listed above, it is clear that any marketing campaign directed at Millennials needs to have the following characteristics –

1) Technology-driven: Clearly, given how dependent on technology Millennials are, any marketing campaign directed at them needs to make use of that fact. The best bet for marketers to achieve success as Millenial marketing is to use the mobile platform: Millennials are well-known for making purchases driven by mobile searches, and use the platform for product discovery, as well as product advocacy.

2) Allow Interaction: Since Millennials prize interactivity and participation, brands that want to reach out to them need to take these characteristics into account.  This can be done in various ways, such as by making your brand accessible to Millennials on social networking platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.  This can also be done via the use of Gamification (superbly executed by Coca-Cola’s Chok Chok campaign), mobile apps and actively collecting feedback and suggestions.

3) Allow Social Commerce: Since peer affirmation is important to Millennials, they are more likely to share information about their favourite brands and are more likely to look up reviews and ratings of products before trying them out.  Therefore it is important for brands to allow for this kind of social commerce interaction. In fact, brands should actively encourage it and make it easy for Millennials to talk to each other about them, by making ‘Social’ an important part of any marketing campaign.

In the next  part, we will look more closely at each of the above essential features of Millennial Marketing, beginning with a focus on technology.millennial marketing


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