You see millennials everywhere, usually in a coffee shop with their comb-back hairstyles furiously typing away on their Macbooks as they sip on a Free Trade Coffee Bean Latte while eating a slice of gluten and sugar-free cake. Their clothing seems recycled at least three times over the past 30 years, and those retro sunglasses are actually from the seventies. Neatly painted fingernails tap on the table as they echo the kick drum reverberating in their earphones, some melodic drone from the latest Indie band. Unlike the generation before them, where it was just a straight-forward newer-is-better approach, this band of fresh spenders wants new-vintage if ever there were such a category.
What Do Millennials Want?
Millennials are fairly simple in their desires and needs. They are modern-day hippies that embrace technology seamlessly, without the desire to conquer every gadget on the planet. There is also the ever-increasing pressure of this generation to abstain from slave-trade items and the environment plays a big role. Don’t mistake them for the tree-hugging and LSD-popping crowd, but rather as the generation that will embrace the very best of nature and make a sizeable difference to their carbon footprint. Marketing material that gets this right, will undoubtedly have a massive impact on this generation.
How To Target Their Needs and Desires
- Less Is More: Create or brand a product that allows the millennial to make an informed decision without all the technical jargon.
- Less Really Is More: Don’t just use this in the reading material, but also ingredients and products. Picking up a beverage that has a hundred ingredients will slowly point this forward-thinker in the other direction.
- Respect Nature: By actively finding ways to reduce the impact on the environment, millennials will find it easier to relate to your brand. The mass-produced temporary items that fill the shelves of supermarkets are slow becoming a fad. A Brogan & Partners article indicates that as much as 13% of millennials are focused on lowering food waste.
Speak to Their Social Needs
The latest trends in cold brewed coffee might be a good angle, however, it is the social context that will play the biggest role. Is your brand doing all it can to secure the interest of your client and their merry band of followers? Social media plays a big role in many of the decisions millennials make, and your brand will need to speak to those needs. The old strategies of bombarding the customer with products are slowly becoming more and more irrelevant, as millennials associate with brands more than anything else.
Brand awareness on social media platforms will involve more personal interaction with customers, and less product pushing. Some of the most successful brands have a happy presence on social media without one product being advertised, such as @nike on Twitter. A respected brand and arguably one of the top sellers in active wear, they ensure users are comfortable with their brand first and product later.
Millennials are after brands they can associate with and trust. This brand will need to provide good-quality products at reasonable prices that have as little impact on the environment. The brand will also need to be more socially responsible and embrace the nuances of social media.