Challenges of Marketing to Millennials and How to Overcome Them

Marketing to Millennials

There’s no denying it: Millennials are taking over. By 2025, they’ll represent 75% of the workforce, says one research report. It also says that about 66% of millennials expect to work beyond 65, with 12% saying they’ll never retire.

Also, millennials work harder than other generations, putting in more than 45 hours a week, with 21% taking second jobs to make ends meet.

If you’re a dry cleaner (or any other retailer) looking to survive and thrive in the future, you need to learn to market to millennials. That’s a challenge. Millennials are a different breed than Baby Boomers.

They’re less concerned with owning houses and cars, for example, and they’re careful spenders, many of whom joined the job market during the Great Depression. They also have less money to spend, especially those paying off college loans.

Marketing Dry Cleaning to Millennials

So how do you market to Millennials? Well, you’ll still have to use the same timeless strategies, like delivering authentic, real value, positioning yourself correctly in their minds, and removing barriers that prevent them from using you, to get them to come into your store. And you still have the ultimate goal of building long-lasting relationships with them.

But you’ll have to “speak their language” to do it. That means using online media over print outlets. Millennials, for example, are more likely than previous generations to check out brands on social networks (57% versus 37%), and more likely to use technology to read reviews, research products, and compare prices while shopping (50% versus 21%), according to one report.

Below are some additional tips on marketing to this younger generation that can help you reach them:

Develop a social media strategy

Millennials love this way of communicating, so you’ll have to use it to do business with them. Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter are especially popular with this generation. Identify which your target audience uses most and use it.

Optimize for mobile

Young people today love their smartphones. Walk past a table full of them and you’ll see most of them glued to one. That makes it critical to use mobile promotional efforts—including social—to reach this generation. Ensure that your content looks great on a smartphone or tablet, and it’s easy to share—something millennials also love to do.

Utilize app-based marketing

About 80% of this generation’s device time focuses on apps. So use this trend to your advantage. You can learn to build your own app using the tools available online. Or, you can use services like Google AdMob to create ads that appear on third-party apps. You can also use services like Kiip to create ads that engage with your target audience.

Zero in on non-traditional demographics

Traditional lifecycle marketing, like school graduations, house buying, and getting married, fails with millennials. That’s no surprise. They love breaking with tradition. Instead, use other demographics, like social causes, small business owners and entrepreneurs, and creative, freelance lifestyles. Also, check out the gig lifestyle.

Favor outbound marketing

Millennials hate advertising. Pure and simple. So, stay away from it if you want to reach this generation. In fact, stay away from outbound marketing, like commercials, direct mail, and magazine ads. Instead, use more inbound strategies, like podcasts with actionable dry-cleaning tips, blog posts, or even colorful infographics with helpful educational tidbits.

Make it easy to connect with you online

No other age group spends more money online than millennials. Or, spends more time researching services and executing online transactions. So, if you’re going to attract Millennials as customers, you need to make it easy for them to do things online. Enlite’s dry-cleaning mobile app, for example, helps customers stay connected where ever they go. It gives them unprecedented access to your services.

Execute an influencer strategy

Millennials are enamored with social causes. So, a good way to reach them is to implement an influencer strategy. Few things have more social clout with this generation. For example, partner with other business already on brand with millennials, developing shareable content and innovative initiatives, and use the influencer’s vast audience to create awareness and visibility for yourself.

Here’s a bonus tip for you:

Stay on top of digital trends that are emerging in the marketplace as much as you can so you can stay relevant. Update yourself on the latest cultural items and influencers your target audience is interested in.

Marketing to millennials is a challenge. No doubt about that. They’re a diverse group that loves breaking with tradition and loathes outbound marketing.

So, use the tips above to help you reach them and stay abreast of what’s happening with this generation. And don’t be afraid to try some non-traditional marketing tactics. They just might resonate with this highly diverse generation.