How to reach the millennials with an online presence

Woman with phone and headphones

A lot of research and observation have been pouring in from the media about the millennial generation for the past few years. Some would claim that they are responsible for the decline (or sometimes even collapse) of entire industries, while others would argue that they’re in fact responsible for the revival or rapid growth of many businesses. There are cases where millennials are said to be self-absorbed and lazy, but others make a case for millennials to be socially involved and overworked. Though the push and pull for how to encapsulate an entire generation is still ongoing, one thing is not up for debate: millennials are a fundamental customer group for most businesses.

What’s a Millennial?

Millennial is a term used to describe the generation who are born between 1981 and 1996. They’re also called Generation Y and Gen Y.

Globally, millennials make up roughly 25% of the world’s population. They’re also fast becoming the key decisions makers at work and in the household.  Compared to older generations, such as the baby boomers and Generation X, they get information less from traditional media like newspapers, television, magazines, and radio, and more from search engines, websites, and social media.  Needless to say, if you want your business to succeed, you must learn how to engage millennials. If you want to engage millennials, you need to learn how to reach them with an online presence. Let’s jump in.

Up your Social Media game

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Millennials put a lot of their time online. Majority of this time is spent on social media. Social media has become the way of connecting, not just between peers but especially with brands and companies. Platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest are hugely popular to this generation and makes business-to-consumer and vice versa as easy as clicking a few buttons.

With this in mind, businesses can’t afford to use their social media in the same way that some would traditionally use their website. For millennials to notice and engage your business, you must regularly generate relevant content that would make them want to stop scrolling for a second and interact with your material.  Content can’t always be about selling and pushing your product. Instead, you have to invest more time and resources in content that connects with your audience by going where their attention and interests are – whether it’s pop culture, a current event, and yes, sometimes, even popular memes.

Be warned, though; millennials value authenticity a lot. If they sense that your brand is all over the place or is trying too hard, they’ll immediately distrust your content and even denounce it in their network.  They key is to define your business’ brand personality and values properly and being consistent with that when you try to involve yourself in language, topics, and trends millennials are highly invested in.

Engage with your audience

It’s already common wisdom to say that business must tailor-fit their website to the needs and wants of their customers (in this case, millennials) to increase the chances of closing a purchase when they’re visiting your landing page.  The question is, how do you get them there in the first place? Engagement is the key. This will help build that elusive brand loyalty millennials sparingly give but businesses crave. This means that you will have to socialise with this group and be responsive and interactive with them, both in social media and on your website.

Responding to their comments and replying to queries promptly and empathetically are all key ways to show this group that you care. It helps a lot if you make them feel like they’re speaking to a real person, and not just an automated script or an uptight corporate representative. As mentioned, millennials value authenticity. A real connection with this demographic will leave a lasting impression and they’re more likely to remember the interaction, promote their experience to their circles, and come back at a later stage.

Personalise and tailor to your audience

When it comes to online businesses, customer loyalty is critical. As hinted earlier, this is one aspect that millennials aren’t too known for. However, it’s possible that they can be turned to devoted customers and promoters if they believe that the brand or company is aligned with their values, advocacies, and personal goals and struggles. It is important that they feel that your brand is part of their “tribe” and affiliating with your company doesn’t threaten their self-concept and identity.  Doing what you can to personalise and tailor to your audience will help you move towards being trusted and integrated into the lives of millennials.

One way you can do is by ensuring an amazing user and buyer experience that validates their purchase. The content on your website should not just simply discuss the features and functional benefits that your offering can provide, but it should also share the value or emotional benefit that the customer will take away from purchasing your product.  Storytelling is a good technique, especially if it helps give a name and face to the business name and product. Don’t be afraid to introduce yourself and your team, show behind the scenes moments, and to share the process you go through to produce and deliver your service. The more you humanise the customer journey of millennials, the more they’ll feel your empathy towards them as individuals, and the more they’ll feel loyal to your brand.

Rank high

They may be online all the time, but this demographic is an expert at filtering out noise and false information. Millennials are relatively quick to decide if they want a particular product or service. Reviews, feedback, and price comparisons are all utilised in order to make a decision. After all, they are a group of people who know exactly how to get the information they need.

So, how does this affect your business? With all the noise and information that millennials need to sift through, chances are they will overlook your business unless it ranks at the top of their search results. It’s very rare for this generation to scroll down a few times on the search results page to find websites and information as these are seen as less relevant, let alone expecting them to find your site if it’s buried in the second or third pages.

This can be solved in two ways: paid search or organic search methods.  Paid search methods include purchasing Google Search Ads so that your name would appear at the top when millennials search for the keywords you’ve purchased an ad on. However, because other similar businesses most likely also bid for the same keywords, chances of your name showing up are low, unless you pay a lot of money to outbid the other brands. A more cost-efficient and long-term solution is by producing great content on your site that would help the algorithms of search engines organically or naturally rank you high on the search results page.

Why you should focus on the millennial generation

man and woman taking selfie photography

Having been born before the maturity of the internet age, the millennial generation is the bridge between the analogue and digital eras. Learning to establish a strong online presence with them is the key to unlocking their market potential for your business as well as setting yourself up for engaging future digital generations. This is one of the biggest demographics out there, and they are ready, willing, and able to spend their money online. By evolving the way you reach your audience in a way the caters with their beliefs, preferences, and needs, you will increase purchases, customer loyalty, and ultimately, capture their minds and hearts.

How we can help you

If you need more help creating content that will charm millennials, we are always ready to assist you here at Topcontent. Contact us below and we’ll give you a free sample to prove ourselves worthy!

Posted in Marketing

About the author

Tanya Erzinclioglu
Editorial Writer for TOPCONTENT.COM