With February winding down, we are looking at ways to capture Millennial engagement through unique efforts that cater specifically to this trendy generation. 2015 was poised as the year of the Millennial consumer, but how did that turn out? What about 2016? The question at hand, for many companies, is not “should we engage them” but “how do we engage them?” This question can be answered once we fully understand the Millennial generation, impossible right? Well, first we can decipher what they don’t want.
Millennials tend to shy away from intrusive forms of advertisement, ads that are disruptive and distracting from the content experience. They aren’t looking for a disordered user experience, which ultimately leads them to install ad blockers. Many of us also know that Millennials, myself included, have notoriously short attention spans. However, a recent study depicts that everyone, not just Millennials, have shorter attention spans now than ever before. Hence, invasive ads are merely a piece of the problem. What we can decipher is that Millennials are simply less likely to put up with ads, even high quality ones, in exchange for content. So, here’s what we can do to engage this vibrant generation.
Establish a Personal Connection
Millennials are looking for a two-way mutual relationship with the brands they love. This sought after type of relationship grow off of personal connections and through one-on-one communication approaches. This approach builds brand loyalty and, in turn, develops Millennials into positive brand advocates, creating communication not only on social media, but also in all environments where a consumer may interact with a brand. With our minute attention spans, this generation requires constant attention and quick feedback. So, ask questions on social media, humanize the brand to bring out its personality, engage with influential followers, regularly share content, and promptly respond to consumer shout outs and in-store experiences. By instigating meaningful conversations through a direct approach, any brand can assist as a caring professional would, and be everywhere at all times. The more Millennials become exposed to a brand through personal experience, the more positive perception they are likely to walk away with.
Create Quick, Digestible Content
Millennials are accustomed to perusing content in much of the same manner, not spending too much time on any one engagement. They want engaging content, that is short and to the point. This generation is used to videos that span 15 seconds or less, so providing quick, consumable content is the best way to engage them. Snapchat alone has consumed the attention of 18 to 29 year-olds, which attracts more than one billion views each day. Snapchat encompasses almost everything that Millennials want from an app, yet marketers remain skeptical in taking the step to pay for content that disappears after a mere 24 hours. While not every brand can afford to dish out $75,000 a day to access Snapchat, as McDonald’s did, they can work to understand the shift in traditional advertising to quick, consumable content marketing. It is vital for brands to grasp the attention of modern consumers through this new revolution in the marketing industry.
In a recent Forbes study, a captivating advertisement establishes brand trust with merely one percent of Millennials it reaches. Millennials that are sincerely intrigued in a brand will gladly exchange personal information for applicable content, but if this trust is broken, you may never see them again, and they will spread the word about it. The ideal platform to establish trust with Millennials is no doubt social media. Another recent Edelman study discovered that 82 percent of Millennials have more faith in a company if it is involved on social media. Engaging Millennials through embracing what social media can do for a brand is essential in establishing trust and engaging in active two-way communication with consumers.