Millennials are the largest living generation, surpassing baby boomers by around a half a million.
This generation is growing up, entering the workforce in ever-increasing numbers. While the youngest of the millennials are still in college or are just entering the workforce, there is also an increasing number of millennials in leadership roles in the world of business. They are being promoted to managerial positions and some are even starting their own businesses.
With millennials being both a present and future force in business, it is naïve to ignore them. As many as 69% of 25 to 34-year-olds are employed at a full or part time capacity. This means that these are the people to start catering your demand generation towards.
One of the most striking aspects of millennials is how they expect much of the same experience from both their B2B and B2C interactions. This means that the standards are higher than ever for B2B brands in order to meet the expectations set by consumer brands.
What do millennials expect from your brand?
Millennials don’t want to be spoon fed the same business jargon that the baby boomers seem to enjoy. They want authentic, real communications.
They won’t buy into the pseudo-hip, wannabe-millennial vibe.
Millennials want your brand to speak to them in a genuine way, addressing them instead of cluttering communications with trendy language and images.
The easiest way to create content that appeals to millennials is to hire them as part of your team. They know their own generation better than you ever could. Have these millennials analyze content that you create and let them tell you how effective it is.
Similar to authenticity, transparency is key with millennial buyers. They’re the force behind food industry cleaning up its act and the trend towards cleaner food.
It follows that millennials would demand the same sort of transparency in the workplace. They don’t want smoke and mirrors, they want direct answers to their questions.
Provide these buyers with facts, numbers, and analytics to convince them that your offering is worthwhile. Don’t expect to make baseless claims and have a millennial not question them. You have the numbers, use them.
Millennials were the first generation to come of age being “hyper-connected.” They were in their late childhood when Facebook and YouTube burst onto the web.
They are used to consumer companies like Amazon catering to their every whim. They are constantly connected, always on.
And they expect that from you too. Make sure that even when you aren’t in the office, a millennial buyer can get the answers they seek.
You can accommodate those needs by implementing an automated chat bot on your website or social. These bots are great for answering simple customer questions and needs, while your employees are busy doing human things like sleeping.
Like I mentioned before, services like Amazon spoil millennials. They want to be catered to and need to have their specific wants met by brands to be impressed.
Create specialty content for them. Make millennials feel special by creating content that speaks to them. Millennials love content with a cause, so when you tell them stories that have a larger purpose than lining your pocket, you will do well.
Beyond that, consider your millennials’ professional interests and be sure to cater to them. Make your communications as personal as possible to draw in the millennial audience.
This generation of buyers is increasingly reliant on the opinions of others. This likely comes from how digitally connected they are.
Think about how a millennial goes about buying something online. They look at the product and read the reviews of others. They then send the product to all their friends and see what they think.
“Should I buy this?” they ask.
And these behaviors are no different when millennials make business decisions. They get information from vendor representatives to get the facts, but then turn to their coworkers and even their friends and families when it comes to making a decision.
This means there are even more stakeholders than ever in millennials’ B2B buying processes. Give yourself and edge in these processes by giving your current customers a feedback mechanism to share their story about your brand.
Words from others are more effective than words from a faceless brand.
Millennials have high standards for the companies they do business with. By being clear and direct with millennials, you earn their trust and their loyalty. That loyalty means a lot. Millennials are likely to stick with a brand once they make a purchase. Overcome their skepticism by creating genuine relationships and communicating with them across all channels so they know you are going to be around for them after you make a deal. Then you’ll have a customer for life, or at least as long as your millennial customer stays at their job.
Have you encountered millennial leads in your pipeline? Do you handle them differently? What works? What doesn’t? Let us know in the comments section.