The Millennials segment defined.
The Millennial market segment isn’t about selling to kids or students. It’s about engaging the fastest growing consumption market globally, comprised of new homeowners, prospective parents, and working professionals entering the prime of their earning capacities.
Roughly defined, the Millennial Generation are consumers born between 1980 to 2000, or are 17 to 37 years old this year. Most of this group are tech-savvy, cosmopolitan individuals that are stably employed and looking to settle down and have families.
Millennials are willing and able to spend on what resonates with them – even more so than their parents did – and can be engaged with myriad digital and social channels. At a glance,
Millennials are a market segment brimming with unparalleled consumption potential. Understanding Millennials is therefore integral to any branding or marketing strategy.
1. The Millennial Potential
Millennials today on average form about 25 to 30% of the population. As more of them increasingly find stable employment and become career-focused, they are generally more optimistic about economic and personal financial conditions than their parents and grandparents.
Thus Millennials spend more than their predecessors did at their age. Recent Euromonitor research has suggested that Millennials spend more because they feel they deserve it, hence they make impulsive purchases and prefer to spend rather than to save.
The Millennial Generation is about potential. In 10 years’ time, the highest spending 40 to 60 year olds will become 50 to 70 years old. These Baby Boomers and Generation Xs will lose their earning capacity, and reduce consumption expenses. They will also become less mobile and less willing to travel to their favourite shops despite brand loyalty.
Conversely, in 10 years’ time, Millennials that are presently in their 20s to 40s will be in their 30s to 50s, and enter the prime of their earning capacities. They will increase their consumption as they mature and become homeowners, parents, and investors. Even the older Millennials in their 50s are very technologically savvy and do not have to travel to their favourite brands, they would simply order their favourite goods or services online – as they always have been doing.
The question is if your business is already orientated to the technological readiness and consumption psychographics of the Millennials?
2. Consumption Psychographics of Millennials
Millennials are sometimes misunderstood as the ultimate self-absorbed generation, with an attitude that says “it’s about Me.” In reality, Millennials as the first digital generation suffering from an identity crisis, and are looking for their place in a bigger and more complicated society.
They care intensely about the world around them and the inequality of others more so than their predecessors did, and this has inevitably led to their value-driven consumption attitudes.
Millennials value value – from high-quality products handmade by hardworking indigenous people, to environmentally-conscious manufacturing methods, or even supporting social causes with part of the profits from their consumption.
Thus Millennials can be a demanding segment to serve. They demand transparency in the goods and services that they consume, and their brand loyalty often comes with a hefty price tag. Millennials want to hear brand stories that resonate with their life values or help them define their identities.
And they want to contribute to this brand building process. Conversations with Millennials therefore cannot be haphazard and thoughtless, but instead facilitate interaction and resonance between Millennials’ identities and corresponding brand stories.
When brands add to Millennials’ life narratives and vice versa, brand loyalty is indivisibly forged.
3. Fortune Favours the Daring
Engaging Millennials is the next big thing, and it pays to build brand loyalty with them with them sooner rather than later. However, brands must be willing to pass certain changes to their modus operandi in order to play by the rules of the Millennials.
Millennials value transparency, demand a relatable brand story, and want to be part of the brand building conversation.
Fortune favours the daring. And brands must change to engage Millennials. This means increasing their perceived brand value by subscribing to a purpose – solving real issues, defining an identity, helping to resolve inequality, or even speaking out for the environment.
And they have to walk the talk – defining tangible metrics to measure their progress, obtaining social proof from their stakeholders, and openly discussing their authentic progress.
This transparency is some certain brands are intensely uncomfortable with – but desperately require – because it requires authentic culture change from the inside.
Millennials want to do business based on who you are – defined by your brand conversations, brand actions, and brand progression.
Make Millennials’ engagement a regular part of your brand. Add to their life stories and they will add to your brand. Sharing content and engaging in conversations is not about bragging or sales promotions. Nobody likes a salesman or a brag. Or a spammer. Instead, brand should focus on understanding why Millennials will want to follow your content on social media, and why they wouldn’t unfollow you.
Millennials follow because it adds value to them – it sharpens their focus or gain resolution towards a problem they have, helps them understand who they are, or reinforces their hidden opinions. Social Media conversations are therefore a careful curation of value-adding content that add to Millennials’ life narratives. Throw out the age-old adage that brands have to post daily to maintain engagement, but focus on creating a tidy and engaging social media pages. Quality over quantity. Substance over form.
Think of your brand engagement as managing an art gallery that curates pieces that provokes conversation, and creates enough empty spaces for patrons to take it all in.
Designs by Millennials
91 Branding & Marketing caters to the fastest growing consumer group that dominates advertising dollars and consumer trends for decades to come.
And we help our forward-thinking clients position themselves to capture this market.
Let us help you engage Millennials effectively.
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