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What You Need to Know About Millennials

November 10 2016 | By Helen Baginska

Millennials have surpassed Baby Boomers as the largest living generation in North America. They are those tech savvy consumers that drive the latest shopping trends. For any business, going after this age group is a smart idea. Let’s have a closer look and see what a millennial is.

Millennial refers to those born between 1981 and 2000, also known as Generation Y. The name “millennials” was given to a Generation Y because they were the first children to graduate high school and to enter adulthood in a new millennium.

Each generation has some common characteristics that define them. Knowing what those characteristics are makes it easier to target this specific group of consumers and to define your marketing strategy.

Digital Natives

Millennials were born into technology. They don’t remember the times when cellphones, computers or the Internet did not exist. The first mass produced cellphones hit the streets in 1983 and since then became a vital part of everyday life. Millennials have certain expectations when it comes to accessing information. To be able to successfully sell to millennials, businesses need to step up their digital game.  These are the consumers that want information here and now. They are tech savvy and they use social media on a daily basis.    

Global Way of Thinking

Fast access to information online makes it easy for global trends to spread like wildfire. If you take two millennials from urban areas in different parts of the world like Hong Kong and New York, you could find more similarities between the two of them than if you were to compare lifestyles of a millennial and a Baby Boomer from the same country. Generation Y thinks globally and more importantly, shops globally as well.

Narcissistic Generation?

Jean Twenge, the author of “Generation Me” states that based on personality surveys, millennials show more sense of entitlement and narcissism compared to previous generations. The surveys also show that Generation Y is defined by attention seeking behaviour and self-expression via social media. That’s why bloggers and opinion leaders are able to influence millennials’ behaviour in a more efficient way than traditional advertising methods.

Delayed Adulthood

They say 30s are the new 20s and young adults in their early 30s nowadays are basically children with bank accounts. Millennials are less likely than other generations to get married early. They prefer to live and work in urban areas, are demanding and career oriented. They follow the “work hard, play hard” rule and spend a good part of their budget on entertainment and experiences.

Shopping Habits

Shopping habits of millennials are defined by the technology. They often use social media to get information about products and services. They trust customer reviews more than they trust traditional advertising methods. Smartphones are an important part of a millennial’s life as it allows them to stay connected anytime, anywhere.  It is important to make your website mobile responsive if you haven’t already done so.

Millennials often compare offers and prices online. There are numerous websites that provide comparison of the similar products or services on the same page within seconds.  Online shopping in general is on the rise and will keep growing fast in the foreseeable future as millennials are one of the main drivers of the trend.

Brand Loyalty

Millennials are price sensitive and prefer to keep their options open. This constant search for a better price and quality is the reason why their brand loyalty is often weak. On the other hand, a majority of millennials belong to some kind of loyalty program and enjoy collecting points. As long as millennials see true value in your loyalty program, they will stay true to your brand.

With all this said, your best bet with millennials is to use technology to your advantage and stay ahead of the game by employing the latest shopping and ecommerce trends.

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