Marketing To Millennials #5
In this month's roundup of all things Millennial we look at common values of the group, privacy and how they use social media, the new Moms and, finally, a tactical take from Macy's.


Despite the 16 year difference in age between the youngest and oldest Millennials, in "Millennial Differences Do Not Waiver," Frank Riolo identifies 3 core values that are common to all.

Social Responsibility Matters

Not only are US Millennials worried about the state of the world they believe they are responsible for it. They therefore want to act on that responsibility by contributing to a worthy cause when they purchase.

Warby Parker, who donate a pair of glasses to "someone in need," helps Millennials live this value.

Peer Opinions Are Huge

48% of Millennials say that word of mouth has influenced their purchasing decisions and 70% feel happier with a purchase when they get peer approval. Sites like Yelp are popular ways to share this information.

Keep It Simple

Simplicity is a must. Millennials have so many options, if they can't immediately decide on you and your offer the next option is only a click away.

Social Privacy

In a look at differences within the cohort, Mary Leigh Bliss finds that younger US Millennials are being more pragmatic about their privacy with a new desire for secrecy and anonymity in their use of social media.

As she puts it in "The Private Side of Social Media," "The Facebookers are becoming faceless," wanting somewhere with less consequences and where they feel less judged.

Snapchat, with its short message life is seen as an expression of this as is Whisper, which lets users share their secrets and contribute without establishing a profile.

"We see them being drawn to networks that make them feel less judged and more safe. Messaging apps with smaller circles of friends and more purposeful (often image-based) functions are attracting them in droves, especially over the last year," Bliss writes.

It's not that Millennials are letting go of wanting to share everything about their lives, it's just that they are now looking to incorporate a degree of privacy into their sharing.

Social Interaction with Brands

A new study by The Center for Marketing Research at the University of Massachusetts ("Millennialls Drive Social Comerce") has found the preference of Facebook over Twitter and Pinterest to be too large to ignore, even when the purchasing behaviour of the other platforms is stronger.

In "How (and Why) Millennials Interact With Brands on Social Networks" Ayaz Nanji found 63% of US Millennials interact with brands via Facebook against 23% on Twitter and 11% on Pinterest.

Top reasons for following the brands across the three platforms include:
  • Support the brand
  • Receive regular updates
  • Receive coupons or discounts
  • Research brands
A greater percentage of Pinterest account holders actually buy something (and are more likely to be exclusively online shoppers) but off a significantly lower base.

The same study, analysed by found that across the beauty and apparel segments, Twitter (50%), Pinterest (49%) and Facebook (47%) had similar purchase activities though, again, off significantly different user bases. 

No details are given for Instagram or Tumblr and this could add significant value to the research.

Millennial Moms

Looking at the youngest of the new Moms, in "Creating New Traditions, Challenging Perceptions: Introducing Millennial Mom" Ira Kern finds Millennial Moms ("MMs")  multi-dimensional, even "a study in contrasts. They're underemployed but entrepreneurial, educated but in debt. They're fluent in technology and new media - but grounded in concerns for their environment, health, and nutrition."

Kern gives 4 hints on how to market more effectively to this sub-group:

Reflect her reality: 40% of US MMs are not Caucasian. They're also likely to be more tolerant of minorities. 

Also, while they are likely to carry a large college debt (running to an average $45,000) they also have a can-do attitude. They're 17% more likely to freelance than their Gen X counterparts. 39% have used social media to sell items, (63% up on Gen X) and are 67% more likely to be paid for running errands or helping others.

Show her respect: 84% of new US Moms are Millennials, so act on their desire to engage which is so prevalent in this group. But don't waste her time. Since becoming a Mom she's added 9 hours of parenting to her busy week and lost 13 hours of "her" time. However,  88% agree they are "busy but still fun."

Be authentic: like all Millennials, MMs are aware of being sold to. Use a light touch, encourage a two way conversation. 49% agree that brands should reflect their values.

Make it easy: MMs use mobile devices for just about everything they can - from finance, to parenting (of course) and recipes. "use compelling visuals to convey your message quickly and easily."

Macy's Targets Millennial Fashion

Finally, Macy's is using a multifaceted, music-based social campaign to target millennial shoppers for its American Rag private label clothing.

As reported in Mobile Marketer, they are leveraging hashtags and Instagram for their "All Access" campaign, providing customers with a chance to win gift cards and tickets to see featured bands such as We The Kings.

During the campaign, artists will create and curate exclusive content for social media channels and the retailer's branded magazine Ragged Mag and sister website

To round out the experience, customers and fans will be able to catch the artists at select Macy's locations.

We trust this month's instalment has given you further insights into how to market more successfully to this group which is set, by 2016, to become the largest of all the consumer groups by spending power.
© 2014 Cumming Agency + Studios Pty Ltd | Privacy | Subscribe | Instagram
Contact us Close

First Name

Address:‎ 43-53 Vine St,
Darlington NSW 2008
Phone: (02) 9690 9200
ABN : 48 077 437 239

Last Name
Email Address
Enter the code
Subscribe Today! Close

Join nearly 1,000 Australian marketing professionals who receive our regular news and information.