Marketing to Millenials

I work in the Spirits industry, and our industry takes great pains to limit the marketing of our products to people of legal drinking age. Much of the segment know as Millennials (defined as individuals born between 1981 and 2000) is now part of our target market, so we need to ensure our current marketing strategies are relevant to this new group. This segment  is the largest generation since the Baby Boomers (born between 1946 and 1964).

A recent study by ComScore provides powerful insights to brands that want to build relationships with these consumers. Some good news, some bad news, some news that makes me realize the amazing opportunities we have before us. Unfortunately this study has segmented the data with an 18-34 cut rather than providing data specifically for consumers 21 and above, so the younger consumers may slightly skew the results. It is also important to note that only women were included in this study, as they are the primary purchasers of most consumer products.

  • These folks have never know life without the Internet or cell phones. 93% of these folks use the web and it is a normal part of everything they do.
  • Younger consumers are difficult to influence with advertising; this finding is consistent with studies of earlier generations, and implies that this is a result of life-stage rather than anything specific to the Millennial generation.
  • Influence of all advertising channels is lower for Millennials than for other age groups, but digital performs better than television in generating lift among this group.
    • the study doesn’t address it, but perhaps this means that we need to explore new ways of connecting with these consumers, beyond advertising
  • While Millennials have a lower level of immediate recall of advertising exposure, they are more likely than other groups to retain a lasting impression (they have higher rates of delayed recall).
  •  Millennials are highly engaged with the content that they choose to view; the study suggests that digital is a good choice for this audience because of its relatively higher ability to engage.

The study concludes that the creative approach is critical in connecting with these consumers (well, duh!):

  • Millennials are notorious for multitasking and short attention spans, so creative must have stopping power and draw the audience in
  • Millennials respond to a powerful and differentiating reason to buy as much as any other generation; the same core drivers of impactful creative strongly related to high ad effectiveness scores, so the creative for this generation doesn’t necessarily need to be different from for other generations.
  • The placement of advertising – the content in which it is embedded – has a significant impact on effectiveness.

You can download the full report here.

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