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7 Tips to Keep Your Marketing from Annoying Millennials


Many brands today are trying hard to market to Millennials. In fact, they are trying too hard and scaring them away. Just because you use Facebook and Snapchat doesn’t mean Millennials will think you are cool. They aren’t stupid and can see your efforts. The key is to naturally appeal to them without being obvious or annoying about it. The last thing you want to do is remind them of their parents painfully trying to act hip and cool. Even if you think you’ve got Millennial marketing down, read through the top 7 things Millennials would prefer to see in your marketing efforts rather than your traditional or overbearing methods.

Use Social Media

This one is an obvious tip. You have to be on social media. At least on Facebook where advertising works well. But being on those platforms isn’t enough. The key is to use social media the right way. That means posting branded content, not your favorite memes. Doing social media right means having a purpose behind everything you post and not posting the first thing that comes to mind. Social media marketing is important to reach Millennials because they don’t respond to the traditional advertising platforms. For a generation that is digitally and socially connected, they want brands who are the same.

Forget Traditional Advertising

You may think that advertising nontraditionally means abandoning print and TV ads and going straight to social media advertising. While that typically may be the case, you can still have traditional ads on nontraditional platforms. What are these traditional ads? They’re the impersonal, company-focused messages that Millennials don’t care to hear. Not only do they not want to hear it, 84% don’t trust it either. Rather than focus on yourself, focus on the people you are trying to market to. Tell them what they have to gain from investing in your business.

Abstaining from traditional advertising also applies to the method of how you present an ad. Methods like pop-up ads may work for some, but not the Millennials who want to feel empowered to make their own decisions based on what they have made the choice to search for. Throwing something in their face is just going to disrupt them from what they were reading and annoy them. Besides, they’re subconsciously trained to hit that X or Skip button without even looking at the content of the ad. If you must have ads on web pages, put them on the side where they won’t become a nuisance.

Be Real

The ultimate way to market to Millennials is just to be real with them. Show your transparency. This goes back to the idea of traditional advertising—the distant, company-focused content. Remember who you are talking to and always keep them in mind when creating any marketing materials. Otherwise, it won’t be shared, liked, or talked about.

Start a Conversation

One of the best ways you can get more business is to start a conversation online. Word of mouth is a strong influence on not only Millennials but also most consumers’ decisions. People won’t trust just anyone anymore when it comes to investing their time or money. Instead of believing advertisements written by the company, they trust their friends, family, and fellow consumers through word of mouth and online reviews.

Give Your Brand a Cause

Ninety-one percent of Millennials prefer to support a brand who has a cause. Think of the shoe brand TOMS whose business model is that for every pair of shoes bought, the company will donate a pair of shoes to someone who doesn’t have any. So by buying TOMS, you get to help someone in need at the same time. If your business doesn’t already have a cause, find one and make sure people know about it. People love to partner with companies under a purpose other than helping that company get money, which goes into the next point about Millennials, that they prefer to see the human side of a business rather than the pocketbook side.

Market to Millennials as People, Not Wallets

Obviously, businesses exist to make money. Millennials know that. But they don’t want to see that making money is your only purpose. Aside from having a higher goal, such as helping the poor, your business should be people-focused. Millennials want to feel you are looking out for what they want first before you ever care about the profit you are making off of them. Take time to notice the things they enjoy and what their life experiences are like. Then find a way to connect with them on that level. And if you can, be creative. Take a look at how Gillette accomplished this with their Kiss and Tell campaign.

Let Millennials Participate

Millennials love when brands treat them as people. If you’re already leading them with a cause and treating them as people, you’re off to a good start. How else can you improve? Let them become a part of your brand. Collaborate with them. Who knows. You just might learn something from them. Millennials want to feel they are a part of a brand and that their thoughts and opinions matter. Most actually want to assist in the development of products. Coca-Cola is achieving this currently by surveying random Coke Freestyle app users to provide feedback on their experience as well as on Coca-Cola’s ideas on future improvement. If you want Millennials to love you, build a relationship with them and let them share a part in your brand.

Marketing to Millennials isn’t as hard as people make it seem. There are actually many brands out there who are succeeding by thinking outside the box in everything they do. That’s why traditional marketing won’t work on Millennials. It’s not what they respond to. So take a look at some thriving brands and see how they are approaching the Millennial generation. You just might be able to learn a few things from them and apply them to your own business.

And if you need any help with your marketing, remember marketing is what we do. We’ll help you target the audience you want and get you the leads you need. Start Marketing Today.