As we noted last month, Millennials are an attractive target for many U.S. marketers. They clearly deserve to be based on their value: numbering some 75-80 million, they have tremendous aggregate buying power.  And they are relatively easy to reach, given their active engagement with a mix of social media sites that include Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and Reddit.

So just create messaging in the Millennial’s jargon, place it on the right social media channels and the target will become brand-engaged! Yes?

Well, based on experience, No! Converting prospects is never really that simple, that formulaic. Reality is a tad more complex. As we pointed out in our last blog on Millennials, it is too simplistic to think that since Millennials are clearly unique compared to other generations that they are homogeneous in mind set and behavior.

Segmentation is always actively at play under the apparent homogeneity.

  • Our segmentation initiatives continue to show that large cohort groups like Millennials will have divergent needs, mind sets and behaviors that partition into differentiated segments.
  • Differentiated opportunities for brand growth exist within each of those segment targets. The risk: ignore the segmentation and opportunities will likely be missed.

A great current example of the segmented realities that churn below the surface appears in a recent Pew Research Center blog (by Jeffrey Gottfried and Michael Barthel) on the social media engagement behavior of Millennials in the 2016 Presidential primaries.

This research highlights two very interesting, dramatic behavioral differences between Millennials likely to participate/engage in their state’s 2016 Presidential primary or caucus. The key insight from this example is how differences in mind set evoke dramatic, meaningful differences in behavior:

  1. Among Millennials engaged in the primary process, Democrats are dramatically more likely than Republicans to learn about the election via social media.
  2. Engaged Democrats also learn about the election from more social media sites than their engaged Republican counterparts.

If your organization is considering strategic or tactical research initiatives among Millennials, we invite you to have a chat with RTi before you proceed. We’ll help reveal and enhance the insights and business strategy.