2013 should be dubbed the year of the Millennials. The Millennial demographic has taken over the economy and has grown exponentially in regards to buying power and brand influence. Last year, 88 percent of Millennials were confident they would find a job despite economic instabilities. That optimism has paid off. Now, Millennials account for roughly 25 percent of the U.S. population with buying power estimated to be $170 billion per year.
Brands that are addressing Millennial values and recognizing the power of the growing demographic are being rewarded with greater brand loyalty and higher purchasing rates within the powerful demographic. According to research conducted by Vision Critical, the top five brands most loved by Millennials are:
How did these brands win the top spot among Millennials? They focused on key Millennial marketing trends.
Involvement in the creation process
Millennials no longer want to be told what to buy. Instead, they are letting brands know what they want and how they want to get it. Marketing towards Millennials is all about an open dialogue – it’s a conversation. Oreo implemented this communication style in its Daily Twist Campaign, celebrating the 100th birthday of Oreo. By using a variety of social media outlets, Oreo connected with consumers in an ongoing conversation every day for 100 days.
Online brand experience
For Millennials, everything is about easy online access. Having a Facebook page is not enough for brands looking to connect with Generation Y. Content must be stretched across multiple networks in order to create a shareable brand experience. Amazon has created an online community that engages Millennials through multiple platforms. The online ecommerce site is accessible through computers, mobile smart phones and tablets and encourages Millennials to share their online experience with friends and family.
Millennials describe themselves as authentic and believe that creativity is essential to the creation of their personal brands. YouTube is an outlet that allows Millennials to openly express their creativity through shareable content. More than 100 videos are uploaded to YouTube every hour and are changing the way Millennials share and express their ideas. YouTube values Millennial creativity and prides itself on providing an outlet where Millennials can connect, inform and inspire others through creative expression.
Millennials have become the most influential brand ambassadors. Generation Y is the first generation to have grown up completely in the digital age. They are constantly connected through a variety of different channels and openly voice their opinions on the Internet. These trends will only become stronger in the coming year. Millennials are an enigma that marketers are constantly trying to solve. As the fastest growing demographic in the United States, it is imperative that brands continue to target and recognize the influence of Millennials.
Leah Swartz contributed to this post.