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The Alternative Board Blog

How to Market to Millennials

Sep. 20, 2017 | Posted by The Alternative Board Worldwide
millennial

If your target audience includes men and women of the millennial generation and you’re selling to them the same way you sell to everyone else, there may be a reason your sales figures are slumping. Perhaps more than other generations, millennials “react differently to trigger points,” says social media consultant Christina Baldassarre, adding that they “connect dots in different ways, because some things are intuitive to them that are not intuitive to anyone else.”

As should be clear by now, millennial consumers live and breathe online. They rely on mobile devices to stay connected with each other and to conduct business. For this reason, marketing to this key demographic should start with optimizing your website for mobile use.

If not, your website “can be difficult to view and navigate” on a mobile device, which can frustrate prospective customers and squash their impulse to buy. “If so, chances are you’re losing out on a lot of business.”

Equally important from a business perspective is maintaining a strong presence on social media (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc.). If you still need convincing, take a look at what ten veteran entrepreneurs have to say about social media and sales in general. The following tips presume that your business has an active social media presence and regularly interacts with your audience.

Here are other tips to keep in mind:

Cultivate relationships with millennial influencers. Millennials don’t care much for traditional advertising but instead rely upon the opinions of their peers and certain key social media influencers—that is, bloggers and other content-generators who’ve amassed a sizable online following. As we’ve noted previously, cultivating relationships with influencers in your industry can pay off in a big way. These action steps can help build a beneficial relationship:

  • Research influencers to ensure that you’ll connect with likely prospective customers.
  • Be clear about your goals (generating sales leads, boosting website traffic, etc.).
  • Incorporate the influencer relationship into a broader marketing strategy.

Attract millennials with mobile-alert sales discounts. Millennials are often willing to disclose their location on their mobile devices if in return, businesses send them news of upcoming sales discounts. If they happen to be in the area and receive word of a special sale, it increases the likelihood they’ll respond favorably and check out what you’re offering.

Offer content that’s informative and timely. Conventional hard-sell tactics won’t work with this demographic. What millennials are looking for is content that’s timely, informative, entertaining and easy to read on the run. Your social media feed should be pumping out links to valuable content on a steady basis, but it’s also important to stay attuned to what’s going on in the moment.

“If a company waits even a couple of hours too long to react to an event, they missed an opportunity to be noticed by a massive number of consumers,” says Business 2 Community, “and instead are brushed off for being late to the game.”

Invite followers and customers to share content with your business. Millennials like the idea of being part of a community. You can foster that connection by inviting customers and social media followers to contribute user-generated content and post it on your various social media platforms.

One effective strategy is sponsoring a lively contest focusing on the most creative (and favorable) ways someone can portray your product or service in photos or very brief videos. Get things rolling on Twitter and then get out of the way. You’ll be surprised by how creative and enthusiastic millennials can be, when they’re excited about something.

Want to learn more about marketing to niche demographics like millennials? Find out if a TAB Board is right for you!

Read our 19 Reasons You Need a Business Owner Advisory Board

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Written by The Alternative Board Worldwide

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