A lot has been written about Millennials, those “kids” who came of age around the turn of the century. Also known as Generation Y, they are the current leaders of today’s emerging technology. Not surprisingly, they are also targets for marketers trying to get their attention about products ranging from beer to health food to cars. Some marketing experts are also looking ahead to Generation Z—the generation which not only grew up with computers but with digital technology at their tiny fingertips.
Among the most common misconceptions about marketing to millennials is that online ads are the best strategy for reaching this generation. While it is true that millennials are often online, that does not mean that online ads are an effective medium.
I have never been a fan of demographic profiling. Sure, this information, at scale, can reveal certain things about a population – and this can be useful to understand whether there might be a connection between our age and (for example) our propensity to over-eat. Or contract disease. Or buy new cars every four years. But populations don’t interest me. They feel like a dead weight around my sense of, and interest in, humanity. Instead, I prefer audiences.
At one time, marketers focused on targeting baby boomers. Today, marketers are turning their attention to millennials. Primarily the offspring of baby boomers or Gen Xers, millennials comprise a crucial segment of the buying public.