We have defined generations based on the age.
And created marketing strategies for them.
Is it really worth it?
A re-post from John Meussner.
Forget About "Millenial" Marketing
Forget About "Millenial" Marketing
I'm sick of it. The "M" word has consumed everything, it seems, and I'm just.plain.sick. I haven't heard of a term to define a generation that has instilled more fear in businesses, more action plans in marketing, more cries of "entitlement". I am a millenial. Here are some fun facts to describe this "millenial".
- I hate text messaging. I'd rather email. Even better, I'd prefer to pick up the phone and solve an issue that will take days of email correspondence in a 5 minute conversation. I'd like to hear the intonations in your voice, clear up any confusion immediately, and have a real life human element to correspondence. Emoji's just don't do it for me ; ) And DON'T. YOU. DARE. ask me if I want to use snapchat for business.
- I have a smart phone - for business, not pleasure. I enjoy being disconnected. I don't own an ipad. My ipod is a first generation (albeit upgraded/newer for extra space), and I have the same laptop I've had since the mid 2000's, and will continue working on it until it no longer works.
- I DO have one of those liberal arts "pursue your passion not a paycheck" type college educations. I was passionate about English literature, so I made it my major. After 4 years, I decided to apply what I could from my major into a field were I could make money. I did not sit around in my parents basement whining about how expensive my degree was, I went out and started working, bought my first home at 23 with 0 financial help, and decided that it was my job to create the life I wanted.
- I do not have a sense of entitlement. Here's the list (in it's entirety) of what I think the world owes me...
There are many other "millenials" like me. We HATE being called millenials, but we can't help the fact that we were born after 1980. But I get it, every generation shares similarities, and for business and marketing purposes, it makes sense to do things that appeal to the masses. Tons of people are making money in the financial services industry by marketing to "baby boomers". GenX offered many businesses opportunity as well. Marketing to millenials will surely create opportunity as well. So let's be clear about what a "millenial" is, and what it is not.
- If you were born after 1980, you're a millenial, like it or not.
- If you are glued to an electronic device all day, every day, and seek approval from people you've never met outside of a digital world, you are not a millenial. You just have a personality disorder.
- If you would like to participate in the biggest financial transaction of your entire life (most likely, buying a home) by pressing a few buttons on a gadget in your hand and expecting the world to jump for you, you are not a millenial. You're naive, and perhaps an idiot.
- If you demand an extremely high level of service and an instantaneous response time from a knowledgeable, experienced professional, but don't think you should have to pay much, if anything, you are not a millenial. You are cheap. And possibly entitled and disillusioned as well.
- If you can't wait 10 minutes for a response without becoming agitated, or better yet, without calling someone else that will get you answers NOW, you're not a millenial. You're selfish, disillusioned, and you're going to end up getting taken advantage of. Remember - Good, Fast, and Cheap - in the real world, you only get to choose 2.
- If you are afraid of investing in the stock market, but are not afraid of investing in $300 sneakers, you are not a millenial. You're fiscally irresponsible.
- If you find it impossible to save money for a home because of your $250/month student loan debt AND (the real reason) you need plane tickets and hotel money to see Rome before you turn 30 so you can etch your name in the coliseum and snap a selfie, you are not a millenial. You are what's wrong with the world.
- If you leave a bad review on Yelp! for a company after an experience where the company really didn't do anything wrong, you're not a millenial. You're a jerk.
I hope I don't sound bitter toward my generation. I'm not. I'm just frustrated with technology companies that perpetuate stereotypes that just aren't true as a means to sell their product. Zillow is trying to convince the public that the only way to buy a house is to find it on an app and click one of their advertising agents, and BOOM! you're instantaneously a homeowner. Verizon is trying to convince the public that a Realtor (did they seek permission to use the trademark in their latest commercial?) has no clue and cannot do their job without high speed service on their tablet to get answers and info in .0005 seconds. Data and marketing companies are trying to convince you that the only way to survice today is to not only learn how to use social media, but to pay them to teach you how to do it - after all, if you don't, you'll be lost with us self-righteous millenials.
If you want to market to the younger generation, have at it. There is opportunity there, but please. Please. PLEASE. Don't think "marketing to millenials" means dumbing things down. The millenial generation did go to school. We can digest more than 140 characters at a time, and the best way to get our business is to know your stuff, provide us with information, and have good communication skills. Don't fall prey to the marketing companies that are trying to convince you we have no clue about finances, no patience whatsoever, and won't do business with you if you haven't hit a certain number of "likes".
Just like the Baby Boomers, GenX, GenY, and every other before them, we want nothing more than to work with #RealEstateAgents and #Mortgage pros that will communicate, educate us, and prove their value when we're #BuyingAHouse.
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