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This Isn’t Your Father’s Target Market

AuthorIs your current marketing strategy age appropriate?? Do you worry that the content the spews from your marketing department is ineffective to the younger generation?? Do we really want young ears, by this I mean Millennials, exposed to boomer-age material about what exactly a product means to them and how can it catapult them into the upper stratosphere of Prestige, Sales or even the highly sought after Corner Office!?  Or even the Gen-X message of wanting to know – does the product work in making their job easier and stress free thus allowing more time for them to be them. Do we need to march on Washington demanding a protective rating system, much like the motion picture industry, where the government dictates which marketing messages is appropriate for which generation?? Just what is appropriate and quite frankly effective, for Millennials to hear??

Seems like only yesterday I was handing out “everyone’s a winner” trophy’s to my 0-13 mixed YMCA soccer league. Funny, they always knew the score and now the sneaky little minions have grown up and dominate the workplace environment. So in lieu of a march on Washington, I ask myself what do I need to consider when drafting my message to make it more “age” appropriate.

AuthorI did a little research and here is what this end of the Baby Boomer, beginning of Gen Xer found out. Brace yourself… Millennials always have their heads buried in digital technology!! I know, I know; stunning considering the fact that the only way I can communicate with my children is to not pay their cell phone or internet bills and have the service temporally suspended. That’s when the communication really opens up at the Moser household! Imagine the family dinner night conversations and bonding opportunities when mommy or daddy forgot to pay the cell phone bill that month. But in all actuality with all the searches, tweets, pins, snaps, comments and forums that Millennials participate in, they are the most informed out of all of us. Millennials are constantly connected and dependent on social media, they trust people over brands, and user generated content over traditional advertising.

I also learned that important to this generation is an honest, content-driven message that educates, empowers and engages them in the total process. They do not want to be sold but enabled to effectively engage and inspire activity. They are a very collaborative group, better educated, optimistic, mobile and social.

Lastly, they really do not want to own.  They rent or subscribe.  Cable TV is out; HULU, Youtube or Neftlix is in and replaces being tied to the cord.

So in conclusion – we all must change our approach to marketing. Gone are the Line Cards and replaced with honest educational content. Our social marketing needs to reflect an inclusive environment that relies on sharing, posting, tweeting, snapping and pinning. Our products need to be the fodder of their discussion and forum boards. And our products need to be fresh, mobile and returnable.

Optima can assist you in reaching this market. Our broad line of New and Exciting Products plus expanded Rental Solutions gives you the tools needed to attack the largest buying segment in the marketplace today. Please contact me to learn more.

Let’s talk!  We’d love to hear your thoughts on the evolution of marketing and the cause and effect of generational differences.  Drop some knowledge bombs in the Comments section below…. the Millennials are watching.

About the Author

Bob Moser is the Sales Enablement Manager at Optima Graphics.
He has been in the Trade Show industry since 1998.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, other Authors, Optima Graphics or Taylor Corp.

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