Who are millennials, and why should you care about them?
Millennials were born between 1980 and the early 2000s. They are heavy media consumers with multi-screen habits and a desire to connect on social media. In the U.S., millennials have $1.3 trillion in annual buying power.
It’s important to consider them when you market your brand online—especially when you create blog content.
Finding millennials is easy. They are online, consuming content and reading blogs. They also have varied interests and diverse backgrounds and are exposed to thousands of other messages a day. How do you turn them into loyal customers?
Here are 11 surefire ways to target millennials using one of their most trusted sources—blogs:
1. Segment your audience.
You can’t segment millennials by age alone. (After all, even the age bracket for millennials is debatable.)
If you publish a blog post targeting 20- to 25-year-old females, you are being too vague. Not all 25-year-olds are the same.
Finding the ideal market for your content requires specificity. For example, if you are selling lipstick, your target market could be an age group of working, single women who love casual fashion and think Jennifer Lawrence is adorable.
Proper audience segmentation helps you to deliver your message where it matters most.
2. Create relevant content.
There’s no point consuming content that doesn’t mean anything to your audience.
Your content must be relevant to at least three factors: age, location and cultural interests.
3. Provide value.
“Four ways you are incorrectly wearing knee-high boots,” or, “The only five movies you should see this summer,” are headlines that have practical value for readers.
Make sure your content is helpful. Create something that makes people’s lives easier. Help them succeed with how-to articles, life hacks and other educational content.
4. Appeal to emotions.
If your blog post rocks millennials’ emotions, they’ll share it. Emotions make content go viral.
When you brainstorm ideas for blog posts, consider amusement, happiness, excitement, affection, hope, anger, anxiety and anticipation.
5. Consider your post’s length.
Millennials are not only exposed to thousands of messages daily, they are also incredibly impatient.
Make your point quickly and clearly. Keep your content short and sweet. Forty-one percent of millennials have no patience for long content.
Bite-size information, such as a list story, works well.
6. Don’t underestimate videos.
Remember what I said about millennials’ multi-screen habits? Millennials are highly visual, which means you should consider producing short videos.
A New York Times study reports that 34 percent of millennials are more likely to watch videos online than to watch TV. Fifty percent watch a video online at least once a day.
7. Go social.
Social media is millennials’ top activity.
A new global study by SDL found that if you want to reach millennials, you have to be on social media. Social media ranks alongside search engines when it comes to content discovery. If you want to build relationships with millennials and gain their trust, you must first do so on social media.
Always link your blog to your social media accounts to increase the likelihood that people will find you.
8. Use hashtags.
Millennials are crazy about hashtags. Attach hashtags to your blog content or campaigns to make sharing and mentioning your content cooler and more relevant.
Hashtags provide a sense of community and a common purpose-two things that matter to millennials.
9. Appeal to millennials’ creativity.
Blog posts should include more than words. Capture your readers’ attention with mashups, funny memes and other artistic content. Creative content tailored to your brand is more shareable.
10. Offer a deal.
Like most people, millennials prefer brands they grew up with. However, this study claims 56 percent of millennials are willing to switch brands for a good deal.
This is good news for new marketers. When you create a blog post, link to a landing page that offers a deal, such as exclusive discounts, vouchers and other tradeoffs.
11. Provide inspiration or an escape.
Give millennials a glimpse of the good life. In your blog post, show how your brand can make their lives better. Inspire them. Help them find happiness.
Millennials don’t remember a world without the Internet. Social media, blogs, websites, apps and online reviews are their primary sources for making purchase decisions, booking hotels, researching restaurants, etc. For organizations’ digital marketing to succeed, organizations must create blog content that strikes a chord with millennials.
This elusive generation may be complicated, but it’s worthwhile to figure it out.
Kimberly Grimms writes for Social Media Today. She writes about business, marketing and everything digital. Follow her @kimberlygrimms. A version of this article originally appeared on JeffBullas.com.