Karen Tippett – Make way! At 27%, Millennials are now the largest segment of Canada’s population. Millennials, those born between 1981 and 1996, grew up in a vastly different place than older Baby Boomers.
Wireless technology has replaced traditional TV and radio. Smartphones are a thousand times faster than mid-1980’s computers. Hand-held devices give access to information, social media, text, voice, and email messaging. If it’s on television, you can see it on a phone.
Move Over Baby Boomers
If you want to shift your focus to sell to Millennials, start by understanding them. In addition to being tech savvy, Millennials:
- Are well-educated.
- Expect quick, efficient messaging.
- Check information they receive.
- Want work-life balance.
- Value financial stability over wealth.
- Want flexible workplaces that rate achievement over facetime.
- Are socially responsible.
- Shop on-line and their #1 choice is Amazon1.
Baby-Boomers were known for:
- Anti-war, civil rights demonstrations/riots.
- Rock n’ Roll.
- The Women’s Movement.
- The Sexual Revolution.
- Credit cards, buy now, pay later lifestyle.
- Dramatically different clothing and hair styles.
- Recreational drug use.
- Common-law living arrangements.
Wow! The differences are mind-blowing! (Baby Boomers coined that phrase).
Marketing to a New Generation
Every generation rebels. Baby Boomers were expressive, sometimes dramatic while Millennials lead change in a “quieter” fashion but are just as effective. If Millennials are in your target market, they must relate to your messaging. Consider the following:
- Your website must be clear, concise, and correct.
- Reflect the Millennial belief system, highlighting your commitment to employees and organizational social values.
Make it easy to connect:
- Keep online messaging simple.
- Phone inquiries need a brief list of choice options.
- Respond quickly to enquiries – ideally in minutes, not hours.
- Work with your Millennial prospect toward a Win/Win outcome.
- If they don’t become a customer, try to help them anyway.
Be Truly Transparent:
- Don’t rely on succeeding by manipulating information or circumstances with dishonest excuses about delivery delays, omission about essential details on products and services – it was always a bad practice, but it’s intolerable among Millennials.
- Don’t waste their time and don’t underestimate them.
Trust is essential to all relationships and may require more effort to sustain with Millennials. If there are doubts, your competitors are just a click away… move over baby boomers, the new majority has things figured out just fine, thanks.
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