A lot of advertising has been focused on the trends and habits of the millennial generation, which is 80 million strong and the largest group of consumers ever.
And for good reason. According to the book “Marketing to Millennials,” brand value used to be the sum of functional and emotional divided by price. The new definition, through the millennial lens, is functional, emotional and participation divided by price.
The new add, participation, stems from the fact that millennials thrive on their peer network and information sharing. In other words, story-doing versus story-telling.
Six questions to ask about your brand:
- Is your brand useful, or just cool? Useful is way cooler.
- Is your brand strategy set up to be a good listener? Invite dialogue or die.
- Does your brand have a purpose? Make this bigger than the product or service itself.
- Is your brand adventurous and fun? Make it so.
- Does your brand embrace change? If yours doesn’t, another will.
- Does your brand come with loyalty rewards? Maybe it should.
Five brands that seem to be getting this right: Nike, who offers not just sneakers, but a cool lifestyle when you wear them, and Skechers, by signing on celebs such as Demi Lovato, and recently, Meghan Trainor to engage fans. And how did Google come out on top in a recent survey which asked college students who they’d most like to work for? Because they push to align their mission and purpose with career goals and desired work environments of these young adults.
And finally, even with its earnings and shares down overall, Whole Foods Market is capitalizing on the shopping habits of millennials who are embracing high quality and healthier food choices. Chipotle has shifted for the same reason and created a culture, as seen in this video posted on Twitter (#AdviceForStudentsThisYear).
Brand participation has also driven further the use of technology among millennials. But when it comes to reaching millennials, does high-tech or high-touch win out?