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Millennials driving change in marketing, and it’s time everyone catches back up

(MARKETING NEWS) Spoiler alert: baby boomers aren’t using social media for marketing and are losing business.

millennials

Millennial marketing media blitz

Millennials are in the driver’s seat these days redefining small and medium-sized business marketing strategy. Twelve years ago, a new generation came of age simultaneously with the internet. That generation has had access to the incredible technology of the new millennium, in addition to the symbiotic development of the two.

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Millennials’ quotidian technology expertise has resulted in a new business-marketing avenue.

Top of the list

Global communication has exploded in the last decade; with Facebook at the forefront, YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram have become the top social networking and media outlets in the world. By September 2016, all four websites were ranked in the top 15 internationally most-visited sites, with YouTube and Facebook second only to the information monolith Google.

Millennials have matured into executives with deciding and staying power, and they’re using the same digital platforms for work that they use in their daily personal lives.

Schooling their elders

Recent studies by Magisto show a stark contrast in marketing trends between millennials and baby boomers.

Spoiler alert: baby boomers aren’t using social media for marketing and are losing business.

Everything is available and immediately accessible online; it makes sense that digital and online media should be at the core of any marketing strategy. Millennials are spending on average 50 percent of their marketing budget on digital and mobile media, while baby boomers spend on average around 10 percent. An interesting shift given the mid-2000s that dominated baby boomers’ interest.

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That number is so low because 53 percent of boomers don’t test the effectiveness of digital media. That lack of curiosity is to their detriment, because 2016 is the first year digital media advertising budgets surpassed other methods, according to eMarketer.

The rationale is in the numbers: a staggering 68 percent of millennials depend on social media advertising for brand awareness. And the technology-first generation is only growing.

If at first you don’t succeed

Last year, Newsweek wrote about “failing fast”, or the idea that you pick yourself up from your failures, digest the lesson learned, and pivot to become more effective.

It’s a tool that has been extremely popular in tech to create a culture of super fast startups. Steve Jobs is a popular barometer of failing fast for his willingness to continue creating and developing on top of his business failures within tech.

Millennials have embraced the trend, and are using digital media popularity to forecast brand success at a rate more than 3 times that of their boomer-aged colleagues. If the marketing isn’t instantly successful, millennials are flexible enough to create another media variation until something sticks.

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One of the most effective media tools is digital video. Twice as many millennials are investing creative funds in variations of video advertisements, shorts that can be tested on digital platforms and easily swapped out for something that might yield more reception. And while millennials at smaller companies list cost as their main limitation for creating videos and digital media, baby boomers cite time. The learning curve grows steeper as technology changes exponentially.

The takeaway

Marketing is changing for the better. All the tools to create digital media are online, and so are all the customers. Millennials have completely commoditized the networking experience—and with billions of people accessing information every moment, these platforms become a veritable treasure trove of digital marketing. Now is the time to add your company’s digital voice.

#MarketingMoves

Written By

Becky Nathanson is a Staff Writer at The American Genius. She has a Master's degree in music from Indiana University and a Bachelor's degree in music and creative writing from the University of Michigan. In addition to writing, she has performed as an opera singer on major international stages. When she isn't making her voice heard by pen or in song, she is a serious amateur chef.

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