Marketing to Millennials: What Works?
As the Pew Research Center points out, the millennial population is expected to hit and exceed the 75 million mark. As one of America’s largest upcoming demographics, business owners really need to find the most effective way to market to Millennials.
Outpacing the 51- to 69-year-old Baby Boomer population of 74.9 million, the 18- to 34-year-old Millennial Generation has the potential to reshape the way America does business. And with more and more immigrants entering the country, the Millennial demographic is expected to increase to more than 81 million by 2036, according to the Pew Research Center.
Social Media is ubiquitous among Millennials, and businesses can take advantage of this to reach and connect with this demographic. Before the advent of the Internet, clients had few options to learn about a business beyond word-of-mouth advertising, asking for past customer referrals or meeting a representative from the business to learn more about it. However, with the explosion of information through the Internet, there is a lot of data – some would argue too much.
Since there’s so much information online and Millennials often use social media to learn more about a brand through its online presence, businesses can engage and build relationships with Millennials through social media. Monitoring social media is the first step to determine if and how your company is being discussed – is it receiving rave reviews or are customers complaining? If your business has a hashtag with Twitter, you can search it and see what customers are saying about your business, good or bad.
Depending on customer feedback, it can be very worthwhile to use your own social media initiatives to engage, question and educate your client base. Doing this will establish a presence with satisfied customers to help further spread the word. For example, if a customer is dissatisfied, you can ask them what went wrong, show them how you fixed things and ask them to give your business another chance.
Businesses that Make a Difference
Along with making sure they get a good deal from a business, Millennials like to patronize businesses that contribute to the well-being of their community. Studies of Millennials around the world have found that this population will more likely do business with companies that give back to their communities over companies that do not. However, many Millennials believe that companies that go overboard advertising their commitment to charities and nonprofits come off as trying too hard and, perhaps, even inauthentic.
When it comes to e-mail marketing, whether millennials receive an e-mail on their desktop, laptop or mobile device, being concise and upfront is key. E-mail boxes fill up fast and we only have so much time, so crafting a brief and informative message is essential.
Creating a conversational headline for an e-mail’s subject line can increase the likelihood that millennials will open an e-mail. Headlines that declare how much they’ll save on a product or service, what coupons and discounts are available, or simply what’s in it for them are all effective means to increase the chances that your business’ e-mail will be read rather than deleted.
Undoubtedly, the Millennial demographic has yet to peak in America. For now, though, one of the best ways to engage this population is to establish a social media presence by reaching out and engaging them with your company’s offerings.