Marketing to Me (A Millennial) is Hard. Learn Why.

Tiffanie Wichman
Tiffanie Wichman in Marketing

Ever wonder why it’s hard to market to the millennial generation? Discover some key insights from your very own millennial living, working, and breathing in the marketing industry.

Give Me Stuff to Interact with!

As a millennial, growing up in the generation of emerging technology, my attention span is short. Research shows that i am exposed to over 2,000 ad messages per day, and that number will only continue to increase in 2016. The only way to reach me as a consumer is to engage with me, not flash messages at me. Give me a quality video to watch, an enticing quiz to take, or a few photos to gawk at with the rest of your message. Essentially, meet me where i am and don’t show me messages that aren’t relevant to me…in my opinion that is wasted money. Do a little consumer research before you start advertising.

Know Who I am

Implement some online market research tools such as keyword search— searching for keywords that people use to discover your service or product.  This can be accomplished through web analytics, word tracking, user testing, online surveys and reviews. Through these findings you can create an ideal persona for your target, and educate your company about who your customers are and what they want before you blast ads at them.

Smile

 

The key here is to make sure that your internal stakeholders (staff) truly understands your vision and the market in order to avoid sending mixed messages.

 

Tell Me a Story…

We all share a special spot in our hearts for a good story. It’s been en-grained in our DNA since the beginning of time when our ancestors gathered around fires in caves sharing stories with one another. This was, and still is, a simple form of entertainment and most people can recall stories very well, especially the good ones. So take it from the cavemen and creatively tell me a story about your brand. A great way to tell stories is through the use of online videos, such as a series of stories over a period of time, commonly known as video stories. Make sure they are linked together using the same characters and themes for the sake of your brand integrity.

 

Just as you create fresh blog articles on a consistent basis, you should build audience expectation through releasing new videos regularly. I would recommend not to create all your videos at once. Why? Because you want to stay on top of current events and buzz news. You will also be able to improve the performance of your videos by analyzing feedback and engagement from the first few episodes you roll out for your brand. A short 5 to 10 minute video will be sufficient for interesting content, creativity, and analysis.  Give it a try and see how it works for your brand! We millennials love watching videos in our spare time, so meet us where we are.

 

Here are a few examples from BMW and Red Bull for some inspiration:

 

 

…A Good Story

This point is important for marketing. You want people to remember you, so tell a story that is memorable and shareable. Give me something to share with my friends, a topic to discuss, or a video that’s viral. All in all, give me something interesting to talk about!  One of my favorite brand videos is the ‘Extra Gum Commercial: The Story of Sarah & Juan’, released in 2015.

 


A comment left by a viewer “I usually skip advertisements but when i tried to skip this it didn’t work, i’m glad because i watch the whole thing and fell in love with the story. so good.”

Extra Gum hit the bulls-eye with this video advertisement. It catered to our emotions on a different level. The “ad” was disguised through a short love story between two young lovebirds. Another thing to note here is that the song playing during the video is a highly recognizable top hit tune from Elvis Presley, Can’t Help Falling In Love. The pairing of the love story and the music selection captured my attention and caused me to remember and even share the contagious ad. This is the kind of marketing our generation eats up!

Another great example that is worth mentioning is the Always campaign “Like a Girl”, instilling the confidence back into all the young girls and women around the world. It was a social experiment that started an epic battle to reshape the meaning of “like a girl” from insulting to complimenting. This memorable and sobering campaign quickly went viral and pierced the hearts of men and women around the world. View the campaign.

 

Make Me Laugh, Think, Smile, and Cry

Cater to my emotions. I will only share your content if i am deeply moved in some form or fashion. I love to read articles that make me think just as much as I enjoy searching for articles that are light-hearted and funny. Both are true and are dependent on my state-of-mind in the moment. It’s hard to know my exact state-of-mind, so diversify and create multiple pieces of content for your brand that will trigger each emotion.

 

feelings

If it’s true that we can experience a relationship with a brand, then why don’t marketers put an emphasis on connecting with our emotions? It’s the emotional aspects that turn products into well remembered brands. This can be accomplished through discovering what we want beyond your features. Adding personality to your brand will also help nurture my feelings towards who you are and what you’re about.  Create content based on emotion, style and creativity to gain my attention. No matter the type of content you create, make sure that that it’s shareable. Here are five types of content styles which you can easily use in your marketing plans this year.

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Marketing to millennials is hard if you neglect to understand who we are, what we like, and the topics we love to talk about and share. The marketing jargon used on our baby-boomer parents won’t work on us. Plain and simple. Do you have any thoughts on how to reach the future generation of CEO’s and decision makers in America? Give us a call or come for a visit over a hot cup of coffee at the Fahrenheit Marketing headquarters.