In 2015 millennials became the majority representation of the workforce and all eyes focused on them as the bull’s eye of the primo audience.
These are the people who don’t recall life before the Internet and a cell phone has always been there. They’re accustomed to being connected anytime, anywhere and they really don’t like constraints when it comes to using technology. After all, they’ve grown up with technology at their fingertips.
So what’s new and different in 2016 about how to market to and communicate with millennials?
First, according to a study released by Hotwire PR, reaching millennials is now more about passion and values than numbers. The agency’s “Communications Trends Report,” based on crowdsourced data from 400 communicators across 22 countries, revealed that engaging with age-agnostic content that emphasizes certain values and appeals to the passions of consumers is now the primary goal for marketers.
Other key trends for 2016 from the study include:
- More Virtual Reality. While VR will continue to grow in the gaming and entertainment markets, new ways to integrate VR into a wide range of content will gather momentum.
- Content that Competes. Using targeted content and campaigns to offer consumers rich experiences so they will return to their company sites to make purchases.
- Real-time Content. By focusing resources more on real-time content rather than planned editorial calendars, marketers will gain better traction.
- Campaigns that Provide a Service. The most successful campaigns in 2016 will offer relevant and useful services to consumers and society at large.
- Brands as Advocates. Values placed at the center of brands’ communications strategies, specifically on major social and political issues will be a primary goal.
- Digital Video. Marketers must do what it takes to figure out which platforms work best for video in 2016 and implement it.
- Third-Party Publishing Channels Boom. While brands will still using their websites to post content, publishing platforms with built in distribution services will become more relevant for marketing campaigns.
While 2016 is still very much about engaging the voluminous number of millennials, (after all, they can hardly be ignored), there are strong indicators that the bigger picture for serious marketers is trending to more age-agnostic audiences with values at the core.