People tend to think of millennials as if they're somehow different from the rest of humanity. While it's true that they grew up in an era that has seen remarkable innovations spring to life, such as the sweeping takeover of the Internet and all of the gadgets that followed in its wake, the truth is that these members of society are still carbon-based, free-thinking individuals who buy the same goods and services of their forebears - with a few differences.
For instance, millennials don't always know how they're different, but they do know when they're being targeted poorly. In an attempt to prevent that from happening, consider the following small business tips for marketing to this audience.
Don't rely too heavily on going viral
There's no denying the immense potential the Web has in the world of marketing, and if one of the only things that separates the millennials from everyone else is their affinity for all things digital, then it might be time to adjust your strategy a hair to make sure you're reaching this entire audience. At the same time, the bloat of Internet information that might be confounding to some is easily navigable to someone who has grown up with it.
Rather than forcing your online presence to "go viral," try to take on a conversational tone instead. Millennials aren't interested in being sold something outright, and as the heralds of the digital age, they'll be able to sidestep your brand for a competitor's if they're not impressed with the way that you've communicated your services to them.
Quality interaction is important
Another notable distinguishing feature between millennials and everyone else is their penchant for communication. The Web is nothing if not a hub of social outlets, where entire sites are devoted to connecting people together for the sole purpose of initiating digital conversations. In knowing that, your marketing strategy should also provide millennials with a certain level of courtesy. With such a heavy emphasis on building relationships and forging connections, this generation has come to expect the same level of casual discussion from everywhere.
Keep your reputation strong
The ability to mine information is seemingly innate to people who have grown up with the Net. If a millennial is considering a new business for the first time, the number of mobile apps and website searches that likely exist to give this individual a list of reviews about your company might shock you. Keeping up a strong, solid reputation is important, and it wouldn't hurt for you to periodically take a look at what people are saying about you on sites like Yelp.
At the same time, it's just as bad if you aren't connected to these outlets at all. Having no reviews might make millennials skip over your establishment just because no one has made any effort to say, one way or another, whether it's worth their time to shop there. Writing your own reviews might be a little transparent, so try encouraging your loyal customers to jot something down for you instead.
Social media is something everyone can use
There are plenty of sites to choose from if you're just trying to your name out there. Between Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus, you're bound to reach people from this generation who might be interested in what you're selling. The hallmarks of a good social strategy, however, are related to the above points - stay visible, keep posting consistently and make sure your conversations are organic, not forced. If you keep these ideas in mind, you'll be in better shape.