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Marketing your business is critical to success. And this means getting involved in several facets of digital marketing: search engine optimization, social media marketing, content marketing, and much more. Each of these are so important for the growth of your brand.
With so much marketing information to retain, without knowing much about your target audience, your marketing efforts will be in vain. If your target market includes millennials–those born between 1981 and 1996–you’ve got to know how to appeal to them. And considering that millenials power the majority of the buying market and comprise one-fourth of the entire American population, chances are that you’ll have to attract this group of people. Here’s what you need to know about marketing to millennials:
Organic Content Is So Important
Millenials care a lot about the content they consume, and cookie-cutter content will not bode well for millenials. A study conducted by Forbes and Elite Daily found that 33% of millennials rely mostly on blogs before they make a purchase, compared to fewer than 3% for TV news, magazines and books.
This is a very social generation, and they tend to share the content that’s powerful, watch video content, read blogs, sign up for valuable marketing newsletters, and download ebooks that help them better their personal or professional lives. And why wouldn’t you make content a priority? After all, content marketing costs about 62% less than traditional forms of marketing, yet generates at least three times more leads.
Authenticity Is A Key Factor
The Forbes study also found that 43% of millennials ranked authenticity over content. This is means that they expect a company to be completely transparent and trustworthy in their business practices. If they do not believe the company is authentic, they won’t waste any time consuming their content.
Every part of your marketing–from your blog content to your social media–has to be infused with authenticity. Millenials don’t like to do business or follow companies who operate like salespeople. Part of being authentic involves communication, and with so many social platforms, there are endless ways to do this. Take a hint from brands that have amazing social strategies to give you some inspiration.
Reviews Are Game-Changers
Today’s millennials buyers trust their shopper peers more than ever. In fact, studies have shown that the majority of consumers trust online reviews just as much as they trust word-of-mouth recommendations. With that in mind, it’s imperative that you pay close attention to your online reputation. The fact is, even companies that sell great products and great services will get the occasional bad review. What millenials care about is how you deal with it.
If you see a bad review, respond to it as quick as possible (timeliness is everything–companies that respond to a bad review months later look just as bad as companies that don’t respond at all). Address the review without placing blame, and always offer something in return for the bad experience. If you feel like the matter deserves special, private attention, request that the reviewer reach out personally, and give them a contact to reach. On the other hand, always encourage your loyal customers to leave reviews. Be open and authentic; let them know how important reviews are to your business, and how much you’d appreciate their input.
Collaboration Is Key
Millenials like to feel as though they are a part of something. For this reason, today’s brands are using collaboration to attract this age group. They prefer to have a say on the type of products and services that are offered, and this helps them feel valued. One study, titled “The Millennial Consumer,” found that 42% of surveyed millennials are interested in being a part of product or brand development.
There are plenty of ways to bridge the gap between consumers and brands through collaboration. Invite them to respond to surveys to help you shape the future of the business. Get them involved in voting. Have a competition and let your customers get involved in your next ad campaign. Whatever you choose, make it engaging, and put the customer first.
Millenials Are Mobile-First
Seventy-two percent of consumers who conducted a local search visited a store within five miles, and 50% of local searchers are making purchases within the same day. Even more, today, more Google searches are happening on mobile devices than desktop devices. This means that marketing professionals have to take extra care to cater to those mobile users. This means that your website should be responsive and mobile-friendly, with little to no pop-up ads, and have a design that’s intuitive enough to cater completely to the mobile experience.
Many businesses–including those that aren’t tech companies–are even starting their own mobile apps. These apps help them engage with their target audience more, as well as capitalize on the spending and activity habits of their customers. For example, although Starbucks is a coffee shop, they have an app component for their online awards and rewards system.
And lastly, with the implementation of chatbot (which are powered through artificial intelligence), more and more businesses are automating and streamlining communication with their customers through platforms like Facebook Messenger. These businesses include Whole Foods, 1-800 Flowers, Sephora, Burger King, JetBlue, and many more.
Influencers Are More Important Than Ever
The rise of influencer marketing follows so many trends we see in the industry today. As previously mentioned, consumers are relying heavily on recommendations from other shoppers. Influencers are a huge part of the equation. Industry influencers are people who have captured an audience by being authentic, and whose audience fully trusts them to steer them in the right direction. Studies have shown that for every $1 invested in influencer marketing, businesses generate $6.50 on average. And in some industries, like beauty and fashion, influencer marketing is even more powerful.
Inc. Magazine dubbed 2018 the “Year of the Micro Influencer,” after millennial lifestyle expert, Chelsea Krost, explained how this form of marketing was so important, generates a much higher ROI than other forms of traditional marketing. “We’ve gotten more social savvy to really understand that you can have 100,000 followers and not really generate that great of engagement, but then someone can have 10,000 followers and generate phenomenal engagement,” she told Inc. “So, the power isn’t necessarily so much behind follower count anymore, it’s really how much engagement and how much traction can you really get in the social media landscape.”