Insights Of Millennial Consumer For Emerging Brands
Consumer spending in developed countries is the highest in the world and is of the order of 70% of the economy. However, consumer goods makers can’t depend on such gross data. They need precise data about shopping behavior of consumers, and shopping behavior varies from Gen X to Gen Z through the Gen Y or the millennials. Millennials contribute to 15-20% of the total population in 2020. Together with the next generation, i.e generation Z, they make up more than 50% of the total population. It is natural that their shopping behavior would determine the consumption patterns in the economy. Needless to say, the millennials are the driving force for the consumer economy.
The Millennials And How They Differ From Others
These are people between the ages of 19 and 39 who have been studied and analyzed over and over again. They do differ from others in terms of social behavior. They have a high propensity for the use of latest technology and gadgets. They also have an altogether different approach to media consumption. But how do all these affect their consumption behavior? How do millennials behave as consumers?
Influence of Millennials As Consumers
It is true that the youngest of the millennials are still dependent on their moms and dads. But the older ones, i.e those in their late 20s, are already entering the workforce and consequently entering their peak spending years. As the younger ones age and get into the workforce, they too enter their peak spending years. These people are growing in number and replacing baby boomers. Generation Z is yet to come up as a significant demography as far as consumption is concerned. Consequently, the millennials have a growing influence on the consumption economy of the country. Statistics also reflect that millennials’ population is set to outnumber others by 2030.
It Is A Disparate Demography With Few Common Traits
Before proceeding to decipher the insights it is imperative to understand that typecasting millennials into a particular trait is a wrong notion. The general idea about millennials that they are tech savvy and spend a lot of time in social media are all true. However, this does not mean that all of them are social unaware, lazy, spoilt or just entitled. These are some of the connotations that are often attributed to millennials. Nevertheless, these are the attributes that typecast these people. It is, in fact, a disparate demography with few common traits.
Millennial consumer personality traits
Affinity for technology
Something that seems to be really common to almost all millennials is their affinity to technology and social media. Indeed, they have grown up with social media and technology and these have become a part of their life. They do adopt technologies and applications faster. They also own multiple devices like smartphones, MP3 players, gaming systems, tablets and more.
Involvement with social media and online communities
The research suggested that although both millennials and non-millennials spend almost the same time online, millennials are more likely to broadcast their thoughts. They are also the ones who often contribute with their own content in social media. They are also far more engaged with online activities like rating products and services, uploading images and videos, writing blogs etc.
Read less books and watch less TV
They read less books and watch less TV compared to Generation X. It was found that only 26% of the millennials watch TV for 20 hours or more in a week. The figure is around 49% for the older generation.
Instant gratification of desire
Instant gratification of desire is the hallmark of character of these people. They want to speed up things and don’t like to wait for things to use or enjoy. So, speed, efficiency, convenience and ease govern their actions and transactions. They value getting through the line quickly even if that means going to a casual restaurant and sacrificing services familiar in upscale restaurants. It is also observed that millennials shop in convenience stores more than the older generation. Their quintessential penchant for swiftness and speed reflects in all of their actions. They prefer paying with their smartphones even if that means donating for a charity. This implies that speed, efficiency, ease and convenience are some of the features that these people fall for, and customer service models need to integrate these features. It is also difficult to make them build a relationship with a brand as these people are always in a hurry.
Trust peers more than experts
For this generation, opinions of peers about products, brands or services are more valuable than those of experts with knowledge and credentials. So, for these people, the opinion of a friend or a peer with a first-hand experience of using a product, service or brand carries more weight than the recommendation of a product, service or niche expert. They also seek information from multiple sources, and prefer non-corporate channels. Moreover, they tend to consult their friends or peers before making a purchase. Over half of them are also known to go through user reviews of various brands before purchasing a product. So, they tend to tap into collective intelligence of the public or a peer group before deciding on a purchase. Since they are also avid social media users, the job of crowd sourcing of intelligence or opinion becomes easy and amplified. So, it is not easy to convince them about the benefits of a product or service through old world advertisements. They are aware of the niceties of corporate communication. So companies need to monitor the online reputation of their brand. They also need to engage with the consumer or potential consumer (the millennials) in social media and various online consumer and other fora.
Millennials are also more likely to explore brands in social media. So, businesses need to see that there is a positive vibe of the brand in social media.
Making social connections through technology
Both millennials and non-millennials like to interact with people, but there is a huge difference between the approaches of two groups. While non-millennials like personal interactions in a one-to-one chat or in a small group, millennials like to connect to a network of people through social media. Millennials don’t just use social media more than non-millennials, they also have larger network of friends or peers. They feel left out if they don’t update their social media posts. They also feel validated when people Like or Share their posts. They are also more likely to go for brands that have mobile websites and Facebook pages. Essentially, they don’t just feel good in networking through social media, they use social media to judge and value relations.
Desire for group activities
The research also suggested that millennials are more likely to engage in group activities such as dining, travelling, shopping etc. Moreover, they are more likely to engage with people outside their immediate families, compared to non-millenials. Retailers and restaurants can encash this propensity of millennials to go for shopping or travelling in groups.
Belief in making the world a better place
This generation has grown up with stuff like recycling, reusing, pollution, landfilling, global warming etc. This is why many of them have a penchant for making the world a better place. They also believe that collection action can bear fruit in making the world a better place to live. They also believe that working for a cause is an integral part of life. So, unlike non-millennials, millennials are prone to integrating the cause with their daily life rather than making a one-off charitable donation. So, they may buy organic products or recycled products regularly to support organic farming or recycling. They prefer to actively engage in a campaign for a cause and also encourage others to support the cause. So, they can participate in fundraising for a cause or something like that. Businesses must take this attitude of millennials in their stride and design campaigns that attract this generation of consumers.
Live for the moment and take last minute decisions
People of this generation have few typical attitudes common to almost all of them. The research suggests that most of them subscribe to the idea of living for the moment. They want to lap up the experiences and enjoyments that are coming their way at a particular instant. They also make last minute decisions. This implies that millennials are impulse buyer compared to any other generation.