Learn to Speak Millennial: How Every Business Should Be Targeting Generation Y

December 7, 2015


Millennials are loyal; intensely loyal at times. 

Seventy per cent of millennials say they always come back to brands they love.

To illustrate this point:

  • Coffee drinkers usually hit the same café – Tim Horton’s, Starbucks or a local neighborhood coffee shop. 
  • Video game fans are typically loyal to a single console, whether it be Xbox or Playstation. 
  • And the most obvious example – iPhone versus Android.  Most users are loyal to the platform and hardware they prefer.

So why are they so loyal?  Perhaps it’s their commitment to purchasing quality over cost.

Nearly half of millennials say that quality of a product is the most important attribute in a purchasing decision (most people would agree with that).  If money isn’t a strong contributing factor, quality is the determining variable when making a purchase.

But for millennials, quality is almost twice as important as price.  Provide an amazing product or service and a good customer experience, and you will have millennial customers loyally on your side.  And they are worth it:

Ad Age points out that “Young people aged 17-34 today – the millennials or Gen Y – will spend more than $200 billion annually starting in 2017, and $10 trillion in their lifetimes.”

As a business owner, this is a target audience you don’t want to miss. 

Determining how to best appeal to this group will be unique for your business.  If you are a consumer technology company, perhaps it’s a natural fit, but if you are an apparel company, there is likely a lot of noise in the marketplace.


So how do you reach them?

More data about millennials confirms their well-known “social” and technological engagement:

In order to attract and target this audience with your marketing strategies, you need to reach out to them in the language they understand, and on the channels they are surfing.  Here are some guidelines:


1. Social media platforms are the ideal way to reach millennials

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, blogs, and review sites are the places where millennials go to gather insight for making purchases.


2. Be mobile

With millennials composing the largest segment of smartphone users, it’s essential that information about your company is accessible on mobile devices. They are very mobile-friendly, so you should be too. Make sure your wesbite is optimized for mobile devices (smartphones and tablets), especially if you are selling your products on it.


3. Get real people to post real content

Encourage customer reviews and expert opinions, rather than traditional marketing messaging.  Given 84 per cent of millennials are listening to social opinion, these messages are what matter most.  


4. Use their language

When delivering corporate messages, be sure to keep in mind the social tendency of this group.  Sound too sales-driven, and they’ll stop listening.  They want conversational language that you would hear directly from someone’s mouth, not marketing-laden messaging.


5. Focus on innovation

Millennials are aware of current trends, particularly as it pertains to technology.  Consider supporting mobile POS solutions that allow these customers to pay from their mobile deviceRunning your business from an iPad is also an attractive way of doing business that appears trendy to the millennial customer.


6. Value time

Given millennials somehow find a way to cram 26 hours into a 24-hour day, they excel at optimizing their time.  Ensure that your customer service recognizes efficient service as a key differentiator for attracting millennial customers.  And when you communicate with them – whether in person or via social media channels – make brevity one of the most important elements.


7. BONUS: Get on board with Apple Pay

Research shows that millennials carry their phone more than a wallet. Show how agile your business is by accepting Apple Pay. Perhaps your payment provider already supports Apple Pay (Moneris does!).

Millennials are characteristically different than previous generations, so it makes sense that they consume information differently as well.  Make sure that you speak their language: Click here to learn more about mobility and how to engage socially with millennial customers.


The information in this article is provided solely for informational purposes and is not intended to be legal, business or other professional advice or an endorsement of any of the websites or services listed.

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