Young adults between the ages of 18 and 34 (more popularly known as millennials) are seen to be shopping online more than ever today. While this may not be surprising (or new) news, it’s important for businesses to pay closer attention to how the consumer behaviours of digital natives are driving new demands, affecting retail models, and most importantly, challenging the conventional methods brands employ to stay relevant and effective.

When was the last time you payed attention to a blinking ad whilst reading an article? When you get to your seat in the cinema, does that Samsung advert compel you to leave your seat immediately and purchase their new model? Probably not – you’re only there early for the trailers.

Today, many brands are occupied with developing fresh strategies to target a demographic that is highly selective about the information they consume online. We’re talking about 84% of millennials – digital natives who are distrustful or apathetic toward traditional advertising.

How then do modern brands capitalize on a demographic of digital natives?

Millennials Know What They Want  

Information about almost anything is easily available online. Millennials aren’t ignorant about what’s out there; if they want a laptop, they’ll search for one that meets their need. Your job is to successfully inform them that your product is (and will continue to be) relevant to their needs, lifestyle and goals. The clincher is effectively achieving this knowing that this is a demographic growing increasingly wary and unaffected by targeted ads. Digital natives are making more informed and conscious purchases; today, consumers know what they want and are targeting brands instead.

Stop Promising, Start Engaging

Young purchasers want to know how genuine your brand is beyond all the grand promises, hype and sweeping statements of inclusivity. Social media and word-of-mouth can now be seen as the predominant factors that determine a brand’s presence and relevance in the marketplace. Everything about your brand and product is constantly being reviewed and circulated by your audience. This leads to why brands must start being personal with your customers (if they haven’t already). Engaging your audience convinces them that you’re not just here trying to sell your product, it shows you’re owning up to the promise you’ve been selling (which we assume should be along the lines of ‘caring for your customers’).

The tip: start viewing every customer as your brand ambassadors and running advertisers.

May the Realest Brand Win

They evaluate how you treat them and what your values are. Although well-informed, digital natives are still emotionally-driven individuals. They gauge the authenticity of your brand by your narrative and stories you tell/don’t tell. They know ultimately that all brands are out to get their money – the ones they give their respect, trust and loyalty to are brands that effectively show how real and passionate they are about their craft and values. It’s important to showcase how real and human you are, above your professional image.

Almost all brands are afraid of showcasing their failures and flaws for obvious reasons. On the contrary, sharing your narrative and being open about your challenges actually make your brand perceivably more accessible, relatable and reliable. Share your stories about your toughest projects, show what happens behind closed doors and showcase your commitment to serving the best to your customers, because all this proves one thing: that you care.



Do you like this message? Want to hear more about what millennials want out of your brand? Let us know!


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How would your brand participate in the golden age of the geek?

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