Want to use content marketing to reach Millennials? Then you need to know they don’t have it as easy as you might think, with many facing an uncertain future.
Here’s an introduction to the state of play for millennials, their perils and pain points, and how brands can use this insight to reposition their marketing.
Millennials make up roughly a quarter of the world’s population and are set to take up 50% of the world’s jobs by 2020. https://www.pwc.com/gx/en/managing-tomorrows-people/future-of-work/assets/reshaping-the-workplace.pdf
Millennial folk are the most educated generation, but struggle the most to secure a job. In most developed countries around the world, they’re at least twice as likely as their older counterparts to be unemployed. Even when they do find a job, their incomes lag behind the rest of society while other generations experience growth. Their current struggles are felt universally and are only tracking to get worse.
The cost of living along with surging rent and house prices have far outpaced their incomes. For young people across the developed world, the current state of affairs is depressing their earnings and creating unprecedented inequality between generations.
Politics isn’t on their side, either.
Socially and politically they’re the losing generation. Australia’s public spending favours pensions and health care for the old over education and opportunities for the young.
In a modern world, it’s hard to find politicians or policies that mirror the values and aspirations of millennials. Politicians in democracies are meant to listen to the people who vote – which young people make up over 20% of in Australia – so why is no one representing them?
This generation has great interest in political causes but a lack of faith in political parties for this very reason. No one speaks to them. Our government is leaving millennials behind, and systematically preventing them from reaching their potential.
Millennials want to drive sustainability, equality, community building, and social change. They’re a product of the digital age, consuming technology 24/7 to share content, spread a message and unite their wider communities.
Brands need to leverage the millennial mindset – and do it authentically. Millennials want something useful, thought provoking and educational that addresses their struggles, values and aspirations and helps them to achieve them.
Our government is leaving millennials behind, and systematically preventing them from reaching their potential
Here are examples of brands doing just that.
1. Nike – goal setting
Nike’s 2016 mini-series Margot vs. Lily targets female millennials to inspire resolution-making in a relatable context. The eight-part mini-series is an extension of the brand’s #BetterForIt campaign, which encourages hard work towards accomplishing realistic goals.
Despite exercise at the origin of the story, the message and values stretch far deeper, with takeaways relating to family, career, friends, wellbeing and other realities of living as a millennial in the modern world.
2. VICE Media – cultural relevance
Vice creates content that young people trust. Their articles, videos and social media activity speak to the times that have shaped millennial consciousness and the widespread loss of trust in politicians, systems and the media.
Vice’s non-traditional content addresses millennials’ deep care about the world by keeping them informed on cultural, social and political international issues and affairs – often not found in mainstream publishing.
3. Who Gives a Crap – social change
Millennials value corporate social responsibility to create a positive impact for themselves and for greater society. According to a study by Rosetta Marketing, 37% of millennials say they are more likely to engage with brands who are making positive changes in society – particularly when it involves helping people in need.
Who Gives A Crap is the face of social change. Born in Australia, this online toilet-paper company donates half its profits to building toilets in the developing world. Who Gives A Crap works to put money in the right place, while providing real, tangible evidence that customers are making a difference and driving social impact.
4. Always – gender equality
This stereotype-smashing video changed the conversation about what it means to run, throw and do pretty much anything “like a girl.”
When the sanitary pad company surveyed a group of women aged 16-24, 89% of respondents agreed that the phrase “like a girl” was negative.
The video’s empowering messages and realistic portrayals challenge gender stereotypes and remove the negative stigma of insults like “throw like a girl” ingrained in our lexicon.
Brands need to start recognising millennial pain points, and learning to speak to them through relatable content. If you want to grow your millennial audience, talk to the great hurdles they face to establish themselves as independent adults and reposition your brand as a distillery for useful and beneficial knowledge they can practice in their lives.
They want to be heard and given an equal chance to their grey-haired rulers. They may have strong pain points but they’re optimistic, less complacent and more agile than their predecessors.