Millennials are a plugged-in, fast-moving, socially conscious generation – 80% have mobile phones, 70% have social media profiles, says Accenture.
Millennials (anyone born between 1980 and 2000) are both the 20th century’s last generation and its first truly digital one. South Africa, for example, has over 14 million millennials, making up approximately 27% of the population.
Millennials make up large and important demographic in retail, mostly due to the fact they’re entering their prime spending years. According to Goldman Sachs, they’re also 3x more likely to talk about a brand over social media which means both brands and companies need to have a social media presence in order to connect and keep up with millennial shoppers.
What do millennials want?
Millennials are tech savvy which means retailers need to be as well. Mobile connectivity (along with free in-store Wi-Fi) is key when it comes attracting millennial consumers, a group that demands seamless in-store and online shopping experiences. Millennials are a generation that relies heavily on research – they value peer reviews and are 50% more likely to make price comparisons on products in-store before heading to the till.
In a world where artificial intelligence (AI), mobile and cloud are prolific, the expectation for a more personalised shopping experience has never been higher. Personalization and relevancy are key: a recent Forbes survey found that millennials appreciate it when brands make ads and social media personal.
Millennials want retailers to align with their values. Customers’ expectations of big business are getting higher, yet their trust in big business is getting lower. Millennials first and foremost choose brands with a a story behind them — they want to know who you are, what you stand for and even the origins of your company. It’s about being authentic.
Brands and retailers need to dive deeper into understanding millennials because at the end of the day, this smart, young group of consumers will have a lot of influence over how your brand is perceived. The future spending power is with millennials – make them a part of your marketing strategy.
Where before companies were purely reactive, often playing defence, they’re now taking a proactive approach towards investing in areas where they think this consumer is going,” says Goldman Sachs’ Lindsay Drucker Mann. “This is going to have a profound effect on the consumer economy going forward.”