02 May Reaching the Millennials
REACHING THE MILLENNIALS
Targeting the millennials in any marketing and communications campaign is increasingly challenging. Traditional methods are less and less effective as audiences fragment, traditional media channels decline, and alternatives proliferate. Research is no exception to this trend.
Communication choices demonstrate this well. The Millennials increasingly never even get a landline connected let alone use it, as they shift to exclusively mobile and online communications. This means one of the traditionally most reliable ways of reaching people is showing ever lower success rates.
And yet they remain as important a market segment as ever. They represent the future customer base of almost every business and will only grow in numbers and affluence with the passage of time. The young also remain the ones who determine what is cool and trendy for the rest of society to follow. They cannot be ignored.
But all is not lost. The youth’s embrace of technology provides a treasure trove of information and insight if you know how to get it. It also provides a host of new methods for connecting with people, and not just the young. Social media is just one example. The volume of data on people’s characteristics, behaviour, and preferences is incomparable, and the potential to align this information with strategic research activities provides exciting opportunities for insights.
In practice, this allows companies to be far more nuanced in who they target and how they go about it, not just in relation to who they communicate with through their marketing, but who they engage and involve within their research activities. More complex and detailed segmentation is now possible through an understanding of the overlapping interests that characterise the sub-groups within a demographic and how they engage with the internet and social media.
Research that provides a deeper knowledge of the population leads to a response which is much more specific in its delivery and hence a more effective outcome.
There has to be a willingness to adapt to the new reality and try something different. New challenges require new skills and the fastest way to gain these is to partner with someone who already has them, rather than trying to learn from the beginning. A new way of operating based on collaboration and partnership is the way forward; building long-term relationships on the mutual support and the benefits which flow from it.
The benefits of long-term customer relationships are well known. It is perhaps time for the benefits of long-term collaborations in business to be recognised in reaching the people with the potential to be a company’s longest term customers.
By Hamish Cameron – Research Consultant
newfocus is a national market research company, specialising in strategic market research and social research, with offices in Melbourne, Sydney & Adelaide.