Since Millennials have become a “thing,” there have been thousands of research reports and even more articles and think-pieces written about this generation. There have been meetings and summits and guest speakers – all just to figure out what type of marketing Millennials actually notice.
But there has not been a solid answer.
A wealth of research already exists on the best way to reach Millennials – it’s through the medium they use the most (the internet) and the channels they’re on frequently (Millennials spend more than 6 hours a week on social media, for example).
There’s been little research, however, that offered insight into what makes Millennials respond to brand messaging.
Recently, some of the leading marketing research companies have made insightful discoveries by not only looking at the current generation, but comparing Millennial’s behaviors to past generations.
ComScore, an award-winning media measurement and analytics company, compares millennials’ advertising engagement to the advertising engagements of 16-29 year olds from 1999 and 1988.
The ComScore study reports Millennials are less responsive to TV ads than their parents and grandparents. But according to that same study, 18-34 years olds in 1999 and 1988 were less responsive to TV ads, too.
ComScore studied the variables that led to Millennials engaging with an ad, and the results were similar to what causes the same age groups in 1999 and 1988 to engage with ads.
When marketing to Millennials, targeting them is only the beginning. Ignoring the importance of creative when targeting Millennials is a mistake and a wasted opportunity. ComScore data shows half a campaign’s impact on sales is due to the creative strength.
Marketers are treating targeting like it’s the single most important part of capturing Millennial’s attention. But creative is equally important, and should be treated as such.