The so-called millennial generation, comprising of people born between the early 1980s and early 2000s, may be a great target market for your local business. This group of young people is a major consumer group – they are around 77.5 million strong, with $1.7 billion in spending power.
What is great for local businesses is the fact that, according to Randal Research, millennials don’t trust big businesses. Instead, they prefer to know more about where the purchased products are coming from and who is behind them. This article will give you five different strategies to market your local business to this specific target market.
Make your Product Customizable
Research shows that at least 40 percent of millennials like to buy locally and that they crave for customized products. As the most digitally connected generation so far, they expect everything to be customizable. For example, they love social networks such as Pinterest which allows them to curate content. They also like buying handmade goods. Entrepreneurs must, therefore, understand that millennials expect to be treated as individuals.
You can take all this into account and offer distinctive local goods that are hard to find anywhere else. This helps millennials feel like they are doing something unique and meaningful by using your products. You should also let them customize their own products.
For instance, Reebok allows customers to design their shoes and Zenni, an eyeglass company, allows customers to upload pictures to see how they look in various types of glasses. Try doing something similar, and don’t forget to give your millennials a chance to make customizations to the product of their choice before they decide to make a purchase.
Organize Local Events
Millennials are very focused on their communities, wanting to meet new people and have new experiences on a daily basis. You can thus add value to your brand by organizing a local event that brings people together. In other words, give millennials a chance to socialize, learn, and have fun – it will pay off multiple times.
Some examples include a video game store holding weekly tournaments for a popular gaming franchise, or a record shop holding a concert featuring local bands. If you own a restaurant, for example, you can organize a recipe-sharing event. You can also hold different workshops or invite guest speakers to enrich your customers’ experiences with your product. Millennials will be excited to support your business if they view you as a part of their community.
Provide Educational Value
We live in an information-seeking era, and millennials are thirsty for knowledge. So, if you are dedicated to improving the lives of millennials by providing some form of education, they will become loyal customers. What can you do?
Well, in order to share knowledge, you first need to acquire it, so make sure to commit to life-long learning. Technology has made education very accessible today, so you should have no problems finding cheap, or even free, online resources very fast. Learn not only to become an authority in your niche but also to familiarize yourself with the topics millennials like.
Now you can share your knowledge in many different ways. For example, you can post educational content on social media, give advice through blog posts or e-mail newsletters, organize webinars on topics millennials are interested in, answer question and encourage discussions on Reddit and Quora, etc. Millennials appreciate thought leadership and expertise; and if you provide knowledge for free, the good word will spread by itself.
Deliver Interesting Content
At least half of millennials are looking for authenticity and awesomeness in business content, so make sure to regularly provide them with interesting stuff. Engage them with how-to articles, tips and tricks, lists, and blog posts. Of course, this does not mean a block of plain text – provide value with images and videos as well.
Make sure to feed them the relevant industry news, but also to entertain them with jokes, funny images, memes, and more. Providing versatile content that doesn’t necessarily revolve around your brand will give your millennial customers added value and enable you to turn them into customers. You will make an even bigger impact if you leverage the power of user-generated content – 84 percent of millennials say such a practice has inspired a purchase.
Finally, while scouring on valuable content, millennials are likely to share it across social media. In turn, this will further give more visibility to your business.
Be Genuinely Social
Among other things, the successes or failures of your company depend on your business culture. If you are active and social, you can expect the same of your customers. On the other hand, being passive and isolated will not make your business popular. So, what you have to do is become truly social, both online and offline – millennials love to communicate.
In today´s digital world, it is imperative to make use of social media and be active on sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and other social media channels. This is what millennials have grown up with. Be sure to keep the communication alive by corresponding with them and make follow ups by asking for opinions, soliciting feedback, and so on.
Don’t forget to show off your pleasant personality offline as well. You can do this by shaking customers’ hands or presenting a pleasant voice over the phone. Be honest and kind, make everyone smile, and millennials will rush to do business with you!
Businesses can target millennials through various ways. The young people in this group are wired for honest experiences, individuality, a focus on community, great content, a desire to learn, and entrepreneurship. If you want to effectively engage them, start using these useful tips today.