Pay attention… it’s happening.
For decades, moms have had the catbird seat in the marketing world, known for making decisions and holding the purse strings for the family. Because of this, moms have long been a primary target audience in advertising – for products ranging from clothes and household items, to tourism and service providers.
If moms are one of your target audiences, but millennials aren’t, it’s time to make some adjustments to your marketing strategy, because millennial moms are officially here.
To most people, the term “millennial” probably conjures a lot of connotations, some good some bad. This often-overgeneralized group, consists of those born between the years of 1980 and 2000. Trendy, entitled, tech-savvy, impatient, easily-distracted, praise-seeking and community-oriented are just a few words that are often used to describe this group.
In the marketing world, however, there is one word for this group that should stand out above all the rest: valuable.
According to Pew Research, in 2015, millennials numbered 75.4 million, overtaking Baby Boomers as the nation’s largest living generation. They are estimated to hold over a trillion dollars in direct buying power – and $200 billion of this is comes from millennial moms, who are growing at a rate of about 1 million moms per year.
While there are some similarities to previous generations of moms, millennial moms have grown up in a very different, more technological world than Baby Boomer and Gen X moms. This makes reaching them different from any generation of moms before them. Millennial moms are digital extroverts who, similar to their non-parent millennial counterparts, place great value in convenience, design and philanthropy, just to name a few.
If you are one of the many trying to get in front of the coveted millennial demographic, here are five considerations for reaching this technology-loving, rapidly-evolving, influential generation.
1. Millennials Are Influential Trendsetters
Trendsetting isn’t just for the fashion world. Many of the increasing nationwide trends that are reaching across generations can be attributed to the demand and influence of millennials. An emphasis on health and fitness, local and craft businesses, online shopping, resource sharing and ephemeral video are just a few trends driven by millennials. The key takeaway from this is to not underestimate the power of millennial influence and trends. It’s a rapidly changing game, so get on board early and get ahead of the curve.
2. Don’t Assume.
Don’t assume that millennials like the same things, or act the same way as generations before them at this age. Millennials prefer access to ownership. They are getting married, having children, and settling down much later than generations before them.
Marketers should be aware of the implications of the social, ethnic and racial diversity of this generation. As many as 67% of millennial moms are multicultural. Half are Hispanic and most are bilingual. By the year 2020, half of all children in the US will be non-white. If you’re looking to reach the millennial mom, don’t assume you know what she or her family looks like.
3. Millennials prefer brands who support a cause… genuinely.
TOMS shoes are a great example of this. TOMS is a company started by Blake Mycoskie. Blake saw first-hand the incredible need for shoes for impoverished children while traveling in Argentina. So Blake started TOMS shoes in an effort to donate one pair of shoes to a child in need for every pair purchased. TOMS took off with cause-loving millennials. In 2016, when millennials were asked to rank their favorite shoe brand, TOMS ranked higher than even shoe-giant and advertising powerhouse, Nike.
The key word here is genuine. After TOMS took off, Sketchers created a slightly less expensive TOMS look-alike called BOBS, in 2010. With a similar name, identical look, and even the same philanthropic one-for-one shoe donation element as TOMS, Sketchers aimed to get a slice of the TOMS market share. But the plan backfired. Sketchers was ridiculed by many, especially millennials, who called the effort an insincere marketing ploy. Sketchers has altered their charitable component for BOBS and has done better in recent years, but still isn’t competing with the brand recognition and revenue of TOMS.
4. Bye Bye Broadcast.
If you’re looking to reach a millennial, gone are the days of creating a 15 or 30 second video spot for broadcast. With the rise of Hulu, Netflix, Amazon and various Network Streaming sites, millennials prefer to watch their shows on demand. News is consumed in real time online, making the evening news no longer breaking, but rather a summary of the events of the day that most millennials have already heard about, mere moments after the fact. Even sports are losing their network audience. With a growing number of millennials ditching cable altogether, even live sports can be widely accessed via streaming services.
This does not mean that video advertising is dead. In fact, this is time and again the way millennials prefer to consume media. But the platforms and strategies have changed. Video is invaluable, but whatever you do, don’t skimp on the quality of the story or the production, because millennials will notice. Which brings us to our final point….
5. Millennials notice, and care about design… like, a lot. Just ask Apple.
From the ads, to the products and software, right down to the packaging, Apple has invested a lot of time and resources into design in an effort to win over millennials. And it has paid off, handsomely.
Well-designed experiences are something that millennials not only have grown accustomed to, but expect. Doorsteps.com CEO Michele Serro wrote an article for Fast Company in 2013 where she said, “For millennials, design is not a differentiator – it’s a cost of entry.” From the advertising to the product itself, if it isn’t designed, and designed beautifully, millennials will move on.
Does your business want to reach moms? Millennials? It just so happens that we can help with that! From marketing strategy to design, we can help you get in front, and gain the attention, of these coveted audiences.