By 2020, Millennials are going to make up a majority of the workforce. They’re already the largest living generation, and the back end of the generation is still in college. That means the buying power of Millennials is only going to increase, but unfortunately, many businesses aren’t properly marketing their goods and services to Millennials. That has to change if businesses want to attract and retain Millennials as customers. But what do they need to focus on?

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1.     Create Useful Content

Millennials are the most educated generation to date, and 34 percent of them have at least a bachelor’s degree. One thing they don’t want to see when they search for a product or brand is content that doesn’t serve a purpose. Articles and blogs that merely drive at a point without providing any real, useful information just looks like advertising to them, and thus they are less likely to trust that brand. A how-to guide, a YouTube tutorial, or even thorough explanations of commonly asked questions are all preferable to content that’s full of fluff.

2.     Tell An Authentic Story

But content doesn’t just have to be utilitarian, it can also tell your story. In fact, Millennials are usually very interested in the backstories and missions of their favorite brands. If your content is interesting and exciting, it does a much better job of attracting and retaining Millennial shoppers than a casual advertisement. Millennials are extremely receptive to authenticity and genuineness. 

Related article: Marketing to Millennials

3.     Promote Your Cause

This ties into the idea of telling an authentic story. Millennials are a socially conscious generation, and they like to promote and support causes dear to them. You’re more likely to gain and retain Millennial customers if you can articulate your mission and provide them with a way to feel good about the purchase they’ve just made. Patagonia is an example of a brand that connects with Millennials because of an authentic image backed up by environmentally and socially conscious decisions. Your small business probably can’t afford to give away the profits of your entire Black Friday sale, but it’s the type of approach to keep in mind as you develop marketing efforts.

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4.     Push The Experience

Another interesting fact about Millennials is that they consistently rate experiences as more important than possessions. That doesn’t mean they’re forsaking all their possessions and moving to the desert, but it does mean it’s important your marketing efforts tout the experience your brand provides. This is the culmination of creating compelling, authentic content. 

5.     Think Mobile

Whether it’s an app or just a fast, easily navigable website, you need to have a mobile resource for your Millennial customers. Many Millennials shop on their phones, but there’s more to it than that. The vast majority also use their phones to comparison shop when they’re in a physical store, or before they make a purchase online. Smartphones are ubiquitous among Millennials at this point, and any business targeting them not considering mobile engagement is missing out on a huge opportunity.

Related article: Six Tips to Gain New Customers

Millennials are constantly being praised, reviled, and analyzed in the public eye, in part because of their growing buying power. If you want to tap into that potential, then it’s time to focus your marketing efforts on what really works.

About Shama Hyder

Shama Hyder is a visionary strategist for the digital age, a web and TV personality, a bestselling author, and the award-winning CEO of The Marketing Zen Group – a global online marketing and digital PR company. She has aptly been dubbed the “Zen Master of Marketing” by Entrepreneur Magazine and the “Millennial Master of the Universe” by FastCompany.com. Shama has also been honored at both the White House and The United Nations as one of the top 100 young entrepreneurs in the country. Shama has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the prestigious Technology Titan Emerging Company CEO award. She was named one of the “Top 25 Entrepreneurs under 25” by Business Week in 2009, one of the “Top 30 Under 30” Entrepreneurs in America in 2014 by Inc. Magazine, and to the Forbes “30 Under 30” list of movers and shakers for 2015. LinkedIn named Hyder one of its “Top Voices” in Marketing & Social Media. Her web show Shama TV was awarded the “Hermes Gold award for Educational Programming in Electronic Media” and most recently she was awarded the “Excellence in Social Media Entrepreneurship” award for 2016 by Anokhi Media.

Web: www.shamahyder.com or Twitter: @Shama.

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