Writing as a Generation X person, I see many other Baby Boomers and Generation X people make assumptions in the realm of sales and marketing as if the world hasn’t changed.
Great example is yesterday when some research came out saying that people are 70% of the way through the buying process before they contact sales people. My response was “no 541t Sherlock” and put the comment. “We do it, our customers do it”. Surely this research is no surprise to people? I don’t remember a Christmas when I didn’t buy all my presents on line.
Are Millennials Really That Different?
Let’s look at Millennials. People talk about them as if they are still Children. Even if we take the term literally in 2018 a Millennial will be 18. In fact Millennials are now in the working environment, making decisions and spending their hard earned cash.
I’ll say that again. They are making decisions and spending their hard earned cash.
My partner’s 23 year old is a “typical” millennial. Works bloody hard and earns some serious cash. He owns his own flat in London. When he was looking for a flat in London he asked us, how do you get a mortgage? So we explained to him the Generation X way of getting a mortgage. He said he found an app. We laughed. He got a mortgage through the app called
https://www.habito.com/ – If you go to their website, you will see him and our cat.
The oldest millennials were teenagers during Netscape’s IPO in 1995 as the internet when from University back room to mass appeal. The youngest millennials were 11 in the year the iPhone launched in 2007. They are used to not just communicating on-line but buying on-line. $25 billion was spent on Alibaba’s Single’s day, last November 11th.
Watching my partner’s son is a joy and an education. Everything is on-line, Internet driven, and mobile. He researches extensively online. He does not read ads. He hates pushy sales people. If he wants instructions on something he goes to Youtube. All the things you would expect and have read about Millennials. But a child he is not.
For example, Millennials don’t want bland mass market products shipped from factories by huge corporations. They want to understand a company’s purpose and while Generation X people laugh about being “connected to a brand”. (Why would you want to be connected to Heinz Tomato Sauce). Millennials want to see, that the products are eco-friendly, that you have a clear vision, that you are aware of the world around you. They want to see that you stand up for diversity and inclusion. All good things to support and subjects that mattered to us when we were young, the difference being we seemed to forget about them. Millennials won’t.
Big brands and companies in the generation x world are big and corporate, pushing out a “us” based “cookie cutter” across the world. The Red Hot Chili Peppers sung about Californication. One size fits all no longer works, millennial want little brands and local brands.
Millennials are Now Business as Usual
This is the Millennial moment. Pew Research Centre, the US Research Group defines millennials as the 73 Million Americans aged between 22 and 37, who will next year overtake boomers in number. The coming of age of the world’s 2 billion millennial is now non only a generation shift, but it is one of ethnicity and nationality. 43% of US millennials are non-white. Morgan Stanely estimates that India’s 410 million millennials will spend $330 billion annually by 2020.
Millennials have reached what banks and retailers call “the most important age range for economic activity”, when households are formed, babies are born and money is spent on settling down.
So where are Millennials?
Millennials are on social media. They are searching, comparing, asking questions, right under your nose. There is one place were they are pretty much guaranteed not to be, which is on your website. It’s corporate, boring and sells to them.
So what are you doing differently to market to people outside of Baby Boomers and Generation X?
People who read this article also read these: