August 25, 2016


by: shelwen elliott


Tags: B2B Marketing


Categories: B2B Marketing

B2B Marketing to Millennials: Getting Inside the Millennial Mind

It is said that Millennials, or Generation Y, are the most valuable demographic of all. For those who aren’t familiar, the is the demographic that encompasses people born between 1980 and 2000.

It’s not just because they are the largest generation by population size – though that certainly doesn’t hurt. It’s because marketers are trying to figure out how to understand their behaviour; their unique and surprisingly optimistic outlook on life, despite a harsh economic climate; and their non-traditional approach to life’s various stages.

Create B2B Marketing with ‘Substance’

Being truly innovative and unique is a challenge, but that’s what makes it fun, isn’t it?

Millennials crave thoughtful content. Forget the hard sell, Gen Y is after thought-provoking, informative, entertaining and clever marketing – they don’t ask for much, do they!!!

Crafting a brand into a story is the key – just look at Airbnb. It’s a story of adventure and unconventional travel, which oozes a modern luxury and affordable alternative for youngsters through attention grabbing video and Instagram-esque imagery.

“Telling and interesting story is paramount – just look at Airbnb. It’s a story of adventure and unconventional travel, which oozes a modern luxury and affordable alternative for youngsters.”

Target Social Groups

Millennials are non-traditional. Their tenancy not to conform to conventional values means they don’t respond well to traditional life-stage marketing messages.

It’s out with the long-term life planning and in with the here-and-now. The spur-of-the-moment. The not knowing.

Marketing campaigns should be targeted at social groups, not demographics. Instead of building campaigns aimed at women in their mid-twenties, change tact and create a campaign that targets individuals with a particular social identity – ‘hipsters’, travelling hippies, or alternatives for example.

Your audience is much more likely to take notice if they can relate to your message within their daily lives, and they will appreciate the level of understanding that you demonstrate by targeting them in this way.

Attention Spans Are Short. Be Succinct

We are well aware of the ever decreasing attention span of consumers, millennials in particular. But who blames them?

Dull and monotonous ads would be enough to lose any potential sale. Not only this, but the calibre of 21st century ads is getting increasingly savvy and straight to the point, and rightfully, we’re taking that for granted.

Innovative marketing messages pave the way to success.

“It’s all about creative visuals. When it comes to effective and engaging communication, the introduction of videos, animated GIFs and cinemagraphs, moving images have blown photography out of the water.”

We typically see a 100% uplift in ad engagement with fully animated online ads.

It is predicted that video will account for 69% of all internet traffic by 2017.

With animated media available across the majority of digital, social and advertising platforms, there’s no excuse for a poor visual presence.

However, don’t remove photography from the equation completely; some platforms (and some devices) struggle to display animated elements, so it’s still vital to have good static photography. Utilising contemporary graphic elements and text overlays with your static visual communication can help with engagement. Superdry demonstrate this well on their Facebook page.

Embrace the Use of New Platforms

A social presence is an absolute must for brands targeting millennials, with the majority using Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Snapchat to interact with brands.

Social platforms allow companies to clearly define the lifestyle they want to provide, as well as the obvious benefit of being able to personally interact with their audience.

Many big brands are experimenting with the ‘Story’ function on Instagram and Snapchat, which allows the audience to watch behind-the-scenes and exclusive product footage for a limited time. Again, successful brands are inviting millennials to engage with the brand through experiences, rather than merely trying to sell a product to them.

In short, adopting a combination of new marketing trends to enhance your existing image would open your brand up to new audience, favour the millennials and ultimately keep you on track with the ever growing digital marketing world.