The term "millennial" is probably driving you crazy by now, but this big population group should be an important part of your marketing plan. The consensus for the current generational age ranges is as follows:

  • The Silent Generation: Born 1928-1945 (74-90 years old)
  • Baby Boomers: Born 1946-1964 (55-73 years old)
  • Generation X: Born 1965-1980 (39-54 years old)
  • Millennials: Born 1981-1996 (23-38 years old)

The important point here is that, while you need to market to all of the above age ranges, there are five solid reasons not to neglect millennials:

Purchasing Power

Millennials have not yet reached their full personal purchasing power, mainly due to heavy student loan debt. This doesn’t mean that they have no disposable income; they eventually will start families, have kids, and become significant consumers.

Although most are currently renting apartments and searching tirelessly through rent reports like this one to understand leverage and get the cheapest price, they’ll one day purchase homes as well.

For now, your job is to get established early so that when millennials are ready to buy your product, they are already aware of it.

Brand Loyalists

Just because millennials may be locked in to new product discovery through social media and the internet doesn’t mean that they are flighty consumers.

According to ANA, 20 percent of millennials state that they would not be averse to using the same products that were found in their parent’s household. The conception that millennials will go from brand to brand quickly may not exactly be true; so again, get your product in front of them early.

Your Social Media Marketing Will Work

Millennials are social media users and devourers, and they do make product choices because of online reviews, Twitter feeds and Facebook ads. If you do have a general social media campaign that is pitched to all age groups, you can be sure that millennials will certainly become aware of it.

Here are a few extra tips in this area:

The Do’s

  • Video content
  • Snapchat, not Facebook
  • Instagram, not Twitter
  • Collaborate with influencers
  • Quality over quantity
  • Get responsive in customer service
  • Keep your content brief
  • Keep it casual
  • Tell a relatable story
  • Be transparent
  • Simplify website navigation
  • Create a seamless experience

The Don’ts

  • Don’t try too hard
  • Don’t tell them who they are
  • Don’t group all millennials into the same category
  • Don’t ignore the power of community
  • Don’t rely on clichés
  • Don’t use old design tactics
  • Don’t be spammy or clickbait-y
  • Don’t be boring!

Big Brand Domination

Millennials like large, techy, edgy and established brands. If you’ve got one, you’re in a great position to market to millennials.

If you are a small mom-and-pop business, however, don’t think that there isn’t a way to reach millennials. A small fast food restaurant on a college campus made it a priority to specially print all of its packaging.

They made the interior of their store look fresh, new and even chain-like. The experience of entering this eatery made guests feel like they were part of a national experience, and although the restaurant was a small family business, it was able to overcome this perception by making sure that their brand went big.

Your Online Buying Experience is Great

The last thing anyone wants is a clunky online buying experience. If a customer cannot easily enter a coupon code, if cart items can’t be switched out, if it’s impossible to print a return label, if your payment system doesn’t look secure, or if your checkout process is just a pain, millennials will quickly go elsewhere.

If you already have a smooth buying process, it’s time to make sure that you also focus on millennials, because even more than other generations, they will appreciate your sleek systems.

Off course you need to know what your market is, but make sure you don’t neglect millennials. Their quirkiness can easily be handled with good tech and smart decisions.