The following is a guest post from Alleli Aspili, a Senior Specialist for Business Development in Infinit Outsourcing, Inc. (Infinit-O), an ISO-certified BPO company that caters inbound call center, finance and accounting and healthcare outsourcing to SMEs and who is also responsible for maintaining online brand and content for Infinit Contact, Infinit Healthcare and other Infinit properties.
Alleli explores how the traits common to the Millennial generation can provide a roadmap for providing these consumers the experiences they desire and collects the trends we’ve all been seeing into a handy list.
And now, Alleli…
Businesses looking to have continuous success must learn more about Generation Y, also known as Millennials. This group’s behaviors, beliefs, interests and shopping habits are shaping the global marketplace. Understanding them will help brands improve how they provide customer service to this highly important market.
To do this, businesses must take note of these following Millennial traits.
#1 Millennials use multiple channels and devices
Millennials grew up in a world of technology so it’s not surprising that they are a tech-savvy generation. They are on multiple platforms, use multiple web-enabled gadgets and are online 24/7. They are so addicted to their devices that one study reveals 53% of Millennials said they would rather give up their sense of smell than give up their technology.
Aside from having a laptop, Millennials also own a smartphone, tablet computers, MP3 players, and gaming platforms among others, and are not shy about trying the latest technology. Businesses would do well to make sure that Millennials can reach them easily online, anytime and in various platforms. However, it is important to note that Millennials expect all platforms to work seamlessly together, a challenge businesses must focus on.
#2 Millennials shop differently and collaboratively
The shopping attitudes, channel preferences and behaviors of Millennials differ from older generations. A Barkley study reveals that “60% of Millennials agree that having a smartphone or tablet to research or purchase is a real convenience.” In fact, more than 50% do their research right in the store.
Millennials are very collaborative and value the opinions of people in their social circles in making product decisions. They also like to consult blogs, company websites and professional review sites before making a purchase. Brands must always maintain their presence on such platforms.
In addition, Millennials love to collaborate with brands and create products or services with them. Brands must then give them an opportunity to do so. Doing so will enable businesses to come up with innovative products and services that truly cater to the needs of this market.
#3 Millennials are big on lifestyle
Millennials are also distinct in their lifestyle choices. The Barkley study reveals that Millennials are more health conscious and try to work out regularly. They also love to eat out and do so more often than non-Millennials.
The study also shows that Millennials desire to travel as much as possible but are more likely to travel for special events or outdoor adventure activities. Whatever they do, they generally tend to be more adventurous in their choices.
Brands need to be aware of these lifestyle choices because they influence the kinds of products and services that Millennials purchase. Brands can look into incorporating these lifestyle preferences into their loyalty programs to keep this generation happy.
#4 Millennials are social
The Barkley study also reveals that social media connections enrich the lives of Millennials daily. They go online to check their various social media accounts because they don’t like to feel like they’re missing out.
Aside from interacting with friends, Millennials also use social networking to interact with brands. They tend to “like” brands more often and interact frequently with their content. Millennials expect brands to have an active presence in social media and expect that they use it to communicate efficiently with them.
Businesses must then figure out which social media platforms this market uses the most. They must also try to engage Millennials by providing content that they will be interested in as well as by addressing their problems and concerns. Millennials are big producers and consumers of content and will not hesitate to share them on social media if they love it.
#5 Millennials think values and good causes are important
Millennials care about making a difference. The Barkley study reveals that “affiliation with a cause is more important to the Millennial generation than to any previous generation.” Much of their awareness of these causes are drawn heavily from digital channels. Brands looking to target this demographic must then strive to promote their causes more through social media and online news sites.
Millennials are willing to spend more money for a brand that supports a cause they care about. Unlike older generations though, Millennials are more willing to do something than just donate money and prefer to volunteer their time instead. To tap into this generous spirit, brands can sponsor fundraising events and other cause marketing campaigns that will allow Millennials to actively participate with their family and friends.
The fact is, this generation of consumers is important to brands just due to their sheer numbers and buying power. They are our present and future, which makes it all the more essential for businesses to study them now.
By Adam Toporek. Adam Toporek is an internationally recognized customer service expert, keynote speaker, and workshop leader. He is the author of Be Your Customer's Hero: Real-World Tips & Techniques for the Service Front Lines (2015), as well as the founder of the popular Customers That Stick® blog and co-host of the Crack the Customer Code podcast.