With Millennials poised to overtake Baby Boomers as the largest living generation in the United States, it’s imperative that marketers figure out how to attract this influential group of consumers. As we explained in our last blog post, these digital natives think and behave much differently than their parents and grandparents – especially when it comes to using technology.
While adapting to new trends should be nothing new for marketing professionals, appealing to Millennials is particularly challenging due to their technological prowess and lack of brand loyalty. A wired, connected world is all that Millennials have ever known, and they rely on technology to a far greater extent than any of the older generations. Because Millennials live their lives on the forefront of new technologies, brands that don’t keep pace will quickly fall off their radars. There are many different strategies brands can employ in order to win over these unique consumers, and to help you do just that, we’ve outlined 7 marketing strategies for attracting Millennials:
Connect with Millennials on Social Media
According to a recent survey, 63% of Millennials say they follow brands on social media, and 64% think companies should offer more ways to share their opinions online. Whether your audience is using LinkedIn, SnapChat, YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, or Instagram, it’s crucial that you find where they spend their time and create opportunities for engagement. You can talk about the latest company news and events, share special deals and promotions, run contests, share pictures, and much more to create more interest in your brand. And while we’re sure you’ve seen countless examples of companies using Twitter and Facebook, don’t be afraid to use up and coming social media channels like H&M did with this SnapChat promotion in Poland. Using their SnapChat account, H&M posted several SnapChat stories that shared clues for followers to find hidden party tickets around their stores. By the end of the promotion, H&M gained nearly 1,000 SnapChat followers and more than 3.8 million people learned that H&M was behind the Boiler Room parties in Poland.
Develop an App
In addition to following brands on social media, 72% of Millennials are also more inclined to download a branded app on their smartphone or tablet. Millennials are always looking for new technologies that make transactions easier and more enjoyable, and a mobile app can provide them with a convenient alternative to their current options. Looking at the Home Depot mobile shopping app for example, users are able to preview what different products from the store will look like in their home using special imaging features that enable customers to digitally “install” these new products. Once they decide on a product, they can check the local store’s inventory and order online directly from their mobile devices.
The average Millennial smartphone owner spends 14.5 hours each week on their phone. Whether they’re texting, calling, browsing the web, or updating their social media profiles, Millennials are constantly on a mobile device, and 50% even say they access the Internet more often through their phone than through a computer. Because Millennials spend so much time browsing the web on their phones, it’s crucial that your website is optimized for mobile. Not only does this play an important role in determining your website’s rank in the search engines, but 79% of mobile users say they’ll go back to the search results if your site isn’t mobile-friendly. Need proof that a mobile-friendly website actually leads to more sales? After optimizing their website for mobile, NARS Cosmetics saw a 54% increase in smartphone checkout conversions as well as a 24% in tablet checkout conversions.
Promote User Generated Content
When it comes to researching product information online, Millennials say that user generated content (UGC) is 50% more trustworthy and 35% more memorable than other sources. While branded content and professional reviews might be helpful in some instances, Millennials often trust information from their peers more than the information provided by companies. That being said, brands can take advantage of Millennials’ love for UGC by promoting the best content users make for your brand. And when it comes to promoting UGC, no company does it better than GoPro. GoPro’s customers use their personal recording devices to capture stunning videos, which GoPro then compiles and shares on their YouTube channel.
Encourage Peer Reviews
Of all the types of user-generated content, nothing is more influential for Millennials than online reviews. User-generated peer reviews are seen as one of the most trustworthy sources of information when it comes to researching products and services, with 68% of Millennials saying they trust the information in peer reviews, and 60% rating and reviewing products and services themselves. Millennials value transparency, and they want to know exactly what they’re getting themselves into before committing to the purchase. In fact, 84% of Millennials say consumer-written content has helped influence a purchase decision. Knowing these reviews could help influence more sales; brands should include product reviews and customer testimonials on their site to help persuade potential buyers. Express Watches, an ecommerce wrist watch website, was able to increase sales by 58% after adding customer reviews to their website.
Create Personalized Experiences
One thing Millennials value about technology is its ability to create custom experiences. From their own social media profiles to online shopping profiles and accounts, Millennials crave a personalized experience and technology has made it easy for brands to create different experiences for different users. One company that does this better than anyone else is Amazon. Using your purchase and browsing history, Amazon makes recommendations for each user based on what they think they might be interested in. To top it all off, users can create their own profiles, save their payment and shipping information, and make checkout easy as 1-2-3.
Support In-Store Displays
Despite the fact that 62% of Millennial shoppers already know what they want to purchase before walking into a store, they’re also 77% more likely than the average shopper to be influenced by in-store displays. Knowing that Millennials are information sponges – especially when it comes to product research – brands can support their need for information by using technology to enhance their own in-store displays. Retailers can help customers find deals, research product information, and even read user reviews. Just take a look at Diesel clothing stores’ “I Like Diesel” campaign, for example. Customers can scan a QR code on an in-store display to unlock deals and find information about other trendy products.
Want to learn more about what it takes to attract Millennials to your brand? Download our free eBook to see 13 ways brands can adapt their long-term innovation strategies to attract millennial consumers: