Millennial marketing

Who are you really targeting?

Marketing to the younger generation has been a “hot button” in credit unions for quite some time.  It most often finds itself on a top list for a credit union’s strategic goals, as it should. As marketers, we continually think of new ways to capture their attention, and most often we speak of them as a unified body of consumers. However, research shows that just as we can’t be all things to all people – we can’t be all things to an entire youthful generation.

The Boston Consulting Group, Service Management Group, and Barkley released a study last year called The Millennial Consumer: Debunking Stereotypes. The study finds that Millennials (ages 16-34) are rather diverse creatures. They broke down the entire generation into six different segments based on their findings.

Hip-ennial – 29%

“I can make the world a better place.”

  • Cautious consumer, globally aware, charitable, and information hungry
  • Greatest user of social media but does not push/contribute content
  • Female dominated, below-average employment (many are students and homemakers)

Millennial Mom – 22%

“I love to work out, travel, and pamper my baby.”

  • Wealthy, family oriented, works out, confident, and digitally savvy
  • High online intensity
  • Highly social and information hungry
  • Can feel isolated from others by her daily routine
  • Older, highest income

Anti-Millennial – 16%

“I’m too busy taking care of my business and my family to worry about much else.”

  • Locally minded, conservative
  • Does not spend more for green products and services
  • Seeks comfort and familiarity over excitement/change/interruption
  • Slightly more female, more likely to be Hispanic and from the western U.S.

Gadget Guru – 13%

“It’s a great day to be me.”

  • Successful, wired, free spirited, confident, and at ease
  • Feels this is his best decade
  • Greatest device ownership, pushes/ 
contributes to content
  • Male dominated, above-average 
income, single

Clean and Green Millennial  – 10%

“I take care of myself and the world around me.”

  • Impressionable, cause driven, healthy, green, and positive
  • Greatest contributor of content, usually cause related
  • Male dominated and younger

Old-School Millennial

“Connecting on Facebook is too impersonal, let’s meet up for coffee instead!”

  • Not wired, cautious consumer, and charitable
  • Confident, independent, and self- directed
  • Spends least amount of time online, reads

If I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard a credit union say they want to reach younger consumers, I’d be sitting on a yacht while typing this with a cold drink in my hand. What I’ve never heard from a credit union is what “type” of younger consumers they want to reach.

If you take this moment to pause and try to compare yourself to the millions of other people in your own generation (whatever generation that may be) ask yourself this question: “Am I just like everyone else in my defined age range called a generation?” My guess is probably not. We are all unique individuals no matter what age category we may fall into and different products/services appeal differently to us as well as the way they are marketed. You say “tomato”, Millennials say they will slice that tomato with their Fruit Ninja App.

So, next time you sit down with your management team to discuss ways to grow your youth membership, ask the team what type of youth membership is a good fit.

Lisa Moore

Lisa Moore

Lisa formerly served as Marketing Manager for Pioneer West Virginia Federal Credit Union before becoming a partner at gira{ph}. At her previous post with Pioneer, she helped spearhead an ... Web: Details