Anybody in the industry can tell you that marketing to millennials isn’t just a challenge, it’s a different game entirely. The numbers don’t lie: as many as 84% of millennials don’t trust or like advertising and are 44% more likely to trust an expert than advertising.
Like it or not, millennials are the future of marketing. If your brand is going to stay ahead of the curve, it’s crucial that you get to know the millennial audience. By understanding millennial marketing, you can stay two steps ahead of your competition.
Offer your audiences a relationship to your brand
The most forward thinking ad agencies are working to build relationships with their audiences rather than simply slinging a product or service. Millennials have been over-saturated with marketing and advertising since day one, meaning they tune out pushy advertising any chance they can get. But if you offer them a chance to be a part of your story, they’ll listen to what you have to say.
Take TOMS, for instance. TOMS built an amazing brand around a simple premise: for every shoe they sold, they’d give away a shoe to an underprivileged child in a developing country. In doing so, they offered shoe shoppers a chance to be something more: a philanthropist doing their small part to make the world a better place. They gave consumers a part in their quest to fight poverty. In other words, they made consumers part of their story.
Cause-driven commerce works
TOMS’ brand is so valuable because they realized that millennials were not the “Me-Me-Me” generation so many painted them to be. In fact, 61% of millennials report being worried about the state of the world and feel personally responsible about making a difference. The same cause-driven approach that fueled TOMS is working wonders for Shinola, who built their brand on the promise that they are helping to revitalize Detroit.
Millennials recognize that their dollar is their vote. Now more than ever, the integrity of a company is closely linked to the value of its brand.
Brands are more transparent than ever — especially for millennials
People of all ages are using the internet to find and research brands, but nobody more so than millennials. Every tech-savvy 20-something uses Google first to find products and services, as well as learn about different brands. This means that socially responsible companies have stronger brands than ever before.