Your Brand Will Be Owned By “Y”

You have spent years marketing your brand. You have worked with your ad agency and PR firm. You have dabbled online and your brand has value. But does it have value to the new consumer? They are the consumer know as Generation Y. They are Millennial’s and they were born between 1980 and 2000.

Everything you thought you were doing right can be thrown out the door. This group doesn’t want to hear from you. They don’t want to be sold to. They don’t trust you! This group (Y) has little to NO attention span. They are berated with messaging all day, everyday and have learned to tune you out. They haven’t grown up yet, as they are still living at home with no real job and not much drive to find a real job, however they are very close to their families.

They don’t know what life is like without a computer and they are even finding computers antiquated. Choosing to consume media via their phone or tablet. Once upon a time a television show aired on MTV. It was a simple show called “The Real World” and it launched a reality show craze that has been living on for 20 years. This group believes anyone can be a stat and with a camera phone and YouTube they can get their 15 minutes of fame. The Internet and specifically social networks have allowed them to have multiple personalities and to hide behind a screen rather than in person social interaction.

Everything is a “Kodak” moment and they record everything. From their food, clothes, cars, technology, tattoos, boy/girlfriends, what they drink and where they are. They write and comment about products and services. And they share what they think.

So, how does your well-established brand reach this group of consumers? Carefully!

1. Give relevant information, the facts, and save the sales speech. Millennials appreciate honesty and want to know the reality of any, situation. They can handle tough news, as long as they are given options for growth. This realistic frame of mind helps them develop skills and meet expectations. Open and honest communication builds a foundation of trust with leadership, ultimately enhancing Millennials’ commitment to the organization

2. Use technology to reach the millennial both online and mobile. Technology is the be all and end all. The millennial with make all kinds of sacrifices to have technology. They depend on technology for their every need: food, comfort, pleasure, communication, shopping, dating, planning, reading, telling time, etc. Technology reigns supreme and unquestioned. It’s the one thing Millennials think they can’t do without.

3. Use social networking as a medium. Millennials live on social networks. They share, judge, comment and discuss brands and products everyday. Reach Millennials where they are; Facebook, Twitter, Instagram to name a few places. Don’t sell them these sites but engage them. Talk to them. Provide them the information they want and need and then get out of their way.

Remember, Millennials don’t wants brands selling to them. They have short attention spans, they are mobile, they love technology and they will talk about you, good or bad.

by Steve Rockman

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