Millennials generally get a lot of slack for being the ‘entitled’ generation, some would even call them lazy. But actually, millennials have changed and are changing the way we do business. With technology constantly enhancing and social media evolving the way each brand interacts with its consumers; the way consumers shop and how businesses connect with their audience is constantly evolving. There are 2.13 billion monthly active users on Facebook, and 330 million monthly users on Twitter, these social media platforms have had a bigger effect on how we do business than anybody ever imagined, and who are the people embracing these advancements? Yes, you guessed it; millennials.
They are the selfie-taking, twitter trending, connection-making faces of distinguished brands. They are the first generation to grow up with the internet, meaning they have natural skill sets that older generations wouldn’t necessarily have. They also have different viewpoints, priorities and outlooks on life, so if you’re thinking of hiring a millennial, or targeting millennial consumers; here’s what you need to know about them.
They expect the best service
Brands are more exposed and accessible now than ever thanks to social media, it’s changed the way brands interact with consumers, and how their customers interact with each other. If millennials don’t get the service they expect, they will go straight to social media; a world where everything is visible, and call you out on it. If you think an older consumer questioning an expired coupon in front of a queue of customers is bad, wait until a millennial calls you out on Twitter in front of a potential audience of thousands. Millennials are very aware of their rights and what service they should be getting, and with every brand now competing for the best reputation, and even the bigger corporations employing a team for ‘brand awareness’ it has never been more important to offer paramount customer service. With platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, and review sites such as Trust Pilot, it has never been easier for customers to share their experience of dealing with your business. It is also worth noting that this doesn’t just apply to millennials, older and younger generations are now jumping on the social media band wagon for complaints and they won’t settle for anything less than excellence, especially if they are paying good money for it.
They are economically, environmentally and ethically conscious
Gone are the days where nobody questions where your produce comes from, or the conditions of your staffs’ working environment. Consumers are economically, environmentally and ethically conscious now more than ever, especially millennials. If your business is very green, organic, or you do a lot for the environment; millennials are more likely to invest in your brand. Millennials are now savvier to what companies are doing and will actively seek out a brand that fits better for them and their ethics, rather than using the most convenient or geographically closer brands. Thanks to the internet, brands from all over the world are now accessible to consumers, so if you offer benefits for your staff, a good work/life balance or do a lot of charity work within your business- tell millennials about it. This will attract them as both consumers and staff members.
They care about the underdog
If you position your brand as an alternative to the giants in your industry, millennials would prefer to use you if you offer sustainability. More and more, millennials are trying to use more local brands with good ethics to help the local community and are caring less and less about the market leaders. For example, thanks to comparison sites such as GoCompare, millennials will choose to go with the cheaper and more suitable option for them without the whistle and bells of the bigger brands that charge them extra for add ons that they don’t really need it. They are less likely to be swayed by big names if a smaller brand offers them exactly what they want, in a simple format that is produced ethically.
They have changed the way we work
They are the advocates for flexi-time, preferring to spend more time actually working than commuting. They don’t like strict schedules or being tied to a desk for 8 hours a day with no wiggle room, and most definitely won’t thrive on inflexible management structures. Unfortunately offering a millennial a salary sometimes is no longer enough; they want to be proud of a company they work for and will invest themselves into a business they feel passionate about. So if you’re thinking of offering a millennial a role within your business, don’t expect them to stick to the traditional working day, working over 40 hours a week, and be happy. Millennials value trust, and will thrive with managers that offer some guidance without suffocation.