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Buying Power of Millennials

The 5 Biggest Mistakes that Campus Advertisers Make

By | Campus Advertising, Generation Z, Media Planning & Media Buying, Mobile Advertising, Social Media Advertising | No Comments
College Marketing and Advertising
Each fall, millions of students attending U.S. colleges and universities carry more than $400 billion in spending power. As students flock to campuses nationwide, there are endless opportunities for advertisers to get in front of millennial buyers.  At MSSmedia, we’ve worked with both advertisers and universities to run successful back-to-college campaigns for 15 years. We are college marketing experts that know the place, the products, and how to successfully deliver marketing strategies. In our 15 years of experience, we’ve seen clients and other agencies make critical errors in their campus advertising campaigns. To learn from their mistakes and execute the best campaign possible, we’ve put together a list of the 5 biggest mistakes that people make. Read on to avoid wasting your budget and resources in the college advertising world!

Not Knowing your Competition

One of the most efficient ways to understand your target market, is to study the competition. Analyze your competitors’ weaknesses and strengths. What do they offer that you don’t? Who are they are selling to? Understand what they are doing right, and what they may be doing wrong. Once you have outlined a plan, start looking at their social media presence! Look at things like their engagement rate on Facebook and Instagram. Search for their home page on LinkedIn and see if you can do better! Conducting an in-depth analysis of your competition will help you organize all your ideas and projects on how to market to millennials. Working with a company like MSSmedia who can help you conduct a competitive audit can put you ahead of the game. Our campus experts can help you redefine your advertising strategy and maximize your advertising budget.

Not Defining your Target Audience

After you have analyzed your competitors, identify a specific target audience that will best fit your product or service. Do you want to target local students, international students, or maybe student organizations? The options are countless; which is why you need to organize your stream of thoughts before going further in your marketing plan. Start by answering some of the following questions. How old is your target market? Where can you find the target audience you want to reach? What are some of the values the target cares for most? What are they most interested in? Campus OOH advertising can be integral to generating brand awareness among generation Z. In fact, research has shown that more than 70% of students pay attention to on campus billboards and posters.

After answering these questions, you can begin to create a sketch of the types of young people you are interested in reaching. With this strategy, you will be able to personalize your marketing message and identify specific characteristics that you may have not considered before. At MSSmedia, we know how to reach college students. For instance, one of our out-of-home campaigns with Panera was launched a few years ago at Ohio University and Virginia Tech. It featured various OOH installments in order to promote the new delivery to the two campuses. The campaign ended up being so successful in the number of impressions delivered (over 58 million) that Panera scheduled a similar campaign the year after. Read More

10 Tips for Advertising to Millennials

By | Buying Power of Millennials, Campus Advertising, DNA of Millennials, Engaging Millennials, Generation Z, Social Media Advertising | No Comments
Advertising to Millennials
As we all know, millennial generations are critically important to the Media and Communications industries. Some people don’t get them, others excuse them, but in order to successfully engage with them the best thing to do is to fully understand who they are and what they want.

So, what is a Millennial? The definition of a millennial is not unanimous. However, it usually refers to the age range between 18-35 years old. But, one of the first words that comes to mind when you think of the millennial generation is SOCIAL. Since Millennials were born during the years of change, such as the advent of digital marketing, they are known for being very active on all social media platforms and are always on top of key trends like food and fashion. However, besides these key millennial generation characteristics, there are many more to pay attention to (especially in the advertising game). In order to catch their attention and build their trust over time, it is important to follow these 10 tips when deciding to advertise to them.

 

SUPPORT A GOOD CAUSE

Supporting a good cause is the perfect way to incentivize your Millennial audience and to show that you care about making the world a better place.

General practices such as supporting a cause and using creative advertising methods will certainly help. For example, climate change has increasingly become a critical topic that many Millennials take seriously. So, once you have segmented your audience, start creating high-quality messaging with the mediums that you will use for the segments chosen. This can be in the form of a billboard, an advertisement on a bus shelter, or any other campus media that engages these younger generations while improving your ad positioning as well.

USE OOH ADVERTISEMENTS

Have you ever seen one of those billboards on the side of the road during rush hour and thought that it read your mind? OF COURSE. Out-of-home advertisements have been found as a very effective method to influence people’s purchasing power, specifically among Millennials. It is a fun type of advertisement that is to be straight to the point. In fact, studies show that OOH resonates with authentic and real-world experiences. The nature of billboard advertisements is to play off of our short attention span and provides a last-touch opportunity in the path to conversion. In this way, brands have the chance to resonate with young generations multiple times of day. At MSSmedia, we provide a suite of OOH campus media placements that will help your brand make an impact and a sincere difference. Curious? Check out our work here.

PODCASTS

Millennial audio consumption of all types has been increasing on a national scale. According to iHeartRadio, we are currently living in an audio-first world where streaming services, podcasts, and radio are gaining ground day after day. This year, 51 percent of American consumers reported listening to a podcast. At MSSmedia, we offer quality audio advertisement placements that capture users on streaming services nationwide.

PEER-TO-PEER MARKETING

Millennials and the Gen Z are interested in authenticity, not salesmanship. They prefer insights from people whose lives are like theirs – not from the ones that are “too cool” to be true. And, this characteristic of the millennial generations opens up the opportunity for peer-to-peer marketing to flood in. Peer-to-peer (P2P) marketing is a method where customers engage other customers through recommendations. With a big component being word of mouth, P2P is used on college campuses. But, social media, in the meantime, is the P2P equivalent in the business game. It doesn’t feel like a sales tactic, Millennials say. It is not pushy or self-focused. On the contrary, P2P lends authenticity while giving a voice to those who have nothing to gain but meaningful and reciprocal recommendations.

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How to Advertise to Generation Z & Millennials

By | Buying Power of Millennials, Campus Advertising, DNA of Millennials, Engaging Millennials, Generation Z | No Comments

Students on Campus Advertising

In today’s campus advertising world, knowing how to speak to millennial generations like Gen Z is crucial to your success. But, what exactly does it take to get through to them?

Be Authentic

Generation Z and other millennial audiences tend to be less receptive to the “standard” advertising tricks. Digital natives like Gen Z might not even pay attention to a print advertisement when they are out and about if it doesn’t catch their eye. Millennials value authenticity far more than previous generations like baby boomers – especially in their advertisements. Make sure to feature diversity, address real issues, and offer your millennial audience some value.

Location, Location, Location!

Of course, location is also a key element of being able to advertise to Gen Zers. Try to place your advertisements in locations where young people spend a lot of time. These can be places like local hangouts near college campuses, in university stores, or even on campus placements like bus shelters. This way, you are gaining valuable impressions throughout a students’ typical day. Want to learn more about college marketing? Check out our campus placements here.

Where to Advertise on Campus

Prior generations spent the same amount of time on campus, but the campus advertising landscape today is much more robust than it was before. Brands can now advertise on campus with bus wraps, newspaper kiosks, bus shelters, billboards, digital screens, and on campus posters. This means that you have more opportunities than ever before to get in front of people born into the millennial generation. In their early stages of young adulthood, college students spend a large portion on their college campus. And, not only does this younger generation spend so much time on campus, they are walking around looking at their phones too. Don’t forget to employ digital strategies and channels to target Generation Z, X, and Y.

Engage Generation Z on Social Media

Gone are the ways of older generations where phones were only used sparingly. It’s no secret that college students spend a lot of time on their phones. In fact, 71% of millennials use social media on a daily basis. That means that members of Generation Z is spending time every day engaging with platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat. Therefore, there are hundreds of thousands of impressions that you are potentially missing out on.

With MSSmedia, we can reach the millennial audience not only in person but throughout their day through unique digital strategies. And, there are a multitude of different ways that brands and organizations can tap into this advertising potential. First, you can utilize direct sponsored content to appear on the news feeds of millennials. And, if you take this one step further, brand ambassador networks have become an influential marketing tactic. So, not only are you reaching Generation Z and other young adults through digital advertising, you can market your product and services within the communities that they speak to every day.

Last but not Least, Don’t forget Google

On average, there are 5.6 billion search queries per day on Google. Granted, Generation Z and other millennial audiences spend a lot of time on social media. But, when they are ready to purchase, they are more likely to go to Google. Keep your Google My Business account updated and always optimize your keyword lists based on search data. This ensures that you can reach millennial users when it is the most important- when they are ready to purchase.

Ready to learn more about how digital strategy can help your business grow? Contact one of our media experts today!

How To Reach Gen Z During Spring Break

By | Generation Z, Mobile Advertising, Social Media Advertising | No Comments
Charlotte Zoda, March 25, 2019

Advertising to Generation Z During Spring BreakThough there is a debate on where Generation Z ends and the Millennial Generation begins, those at the end of the spectrum for Gen Z (born 1997-2012) are already starting to graduate college. Gen Z is on the way to becoming one of the largest generations (about 32% of the population) and with that comes spending power. Spring Break comes as a welcomed distraction for most students, but how do you capture the attention of these “digital natives” as they make plans with friends and travel across the world?

 

Promo Items and Merchandise

Passing out shirts or sunglasses to the Spring Break masses may feel archaic, but it’s a simple way to create brand awareness. Gen Z often prefer a cool product over a cool experience. Putting in extra thought and time in your promo item could really pay off in the long run.

 

Social Media

Snapchat, Instagram, and YouTube rank at the top for most popular social media platforms for this generation. They’re creating new industry standards, such as the 6-second pre-roll ads. They’re looking for influencer and peer recommendations on products, where to eat, and interesting places to visit. Companies should cross-promote branded content where these users spend the most time.

 

Mobile Advertising

The average smartphone usage with this generation is higher than on any other device, which is 15.4 hours per week. On average people spend about 89% of their time within apps, like streaming Spotify at the beach. Therefore, it’s key to leverage in-app advertising. It is also key to have a mobile-optimized and user-friendly website to further connect with this audience, to engage them where they are spending their time.

 

More research and studies will come out as this group continues to age, looking at how they impact purchasing power and develop brand loyalties. Current attitudes may shift, but one thing is certain: a well developed multi-channel marketing plan is a must. Spring Break may be only two weeks in the spring, but the opportunity to reach this young demographic is all year long.

Unbound: The Rise of Generation Z

By | Buying Power of Millennials, Generation Z | No Comments
Unbound: The Rise of Generation Z. Charlotte Zoda November 8, 2017

“With a huge shift in the type of media consumed and platforms being used by Generation Z, we discuss the strategies, platforms and tactics that will drive engagement within this important demographic.”

 

Speakers:

  • Sameer Deen, SVP Digital – Univision
  • Dan Perry, Managing Director – LATAM, Vice
  • Sergio Cisneros, Head of Brand Strategy – VIX Media
  • Justin Reilly, Head of Customer Innovation – Verizon Fios
  • Jaime Matus, Central America B2B Market Manager – Claro

 

The UK based technology and startup gathering Unbound came to the US for the first time with the inaugural conference taking place in Miami, FL in early November. One of the afternoon talks centered on a newer generation coming into play, Generation Z and how corporations are shifting strategies to reach this internet/tech savvy demographic.

 

The speakers were asked, “How are you trying to prepare for Generation Z?”  Justin Reilly dropped a surprising fact: ~70% of families have Generation Z members, who hold $44BN in buying power. Reilly shares that in order to prepare, you have to know how to interact with this new generation.

 

Both Jaime Matus and Sameer Deen note similar hurdles of reaching this demographic, especially as content is expected to be better, faster, and bigger. Companies and brands are now diversifying methods of consumption across multiple platforms.  This was especially noted by Dan Perry, VICE, as he shared the evolution of VICE starting as a print magazine to later include online and cable television network formats. This is to meet increasing demands and evolving technology.

 

Not only do these brands/companies have to be in the same place as this niche audience, Sergio Cisneros mentioned, but the content presented to Gen Z must connect on a human level, be authentic, and the voice must be identifiable. Perry notes that cultural passions and causes are very important to Gen Z. For example: Promoting the chicken in a fast food sandwich as humanely and sustainability raised consider more valuable than a Buy-One-Get-One deal.

 

Long story short, in order to effectively reach this demographic, marketers must produce meaningful and authentic content that is delivered at a remarkably fast rate across multiple channels. Companies, brands, and agencies must continue to be one step ahead of this super social and techy generation.

College Marketing and Advertising

College Marketing: Advertise on University Campuses

By | Buying Power of Millennials | 6 Comments

College students represent one of the most valuable target markets. While in school, they are making their own purchasing decisions for the first time, which makes them impressionable for brands. If businesses can connect with students early on, they can form brand loyalties that will continue for the rest of the consumer’s life.

It is an investment for brands to target this tech-savvy, educated and connected market. 64% of a student’s income is discretionary and they have an estimated $417 billion in spending power. Upon graduation, their incomes will be significantly higher and they can now afford to pay for additional products and services offered at a higher price point. Students spend the most of their money at food, beverage, entertainment and retail stores, but this doesn’t exclude other industries from successfully garnering the attention of college students.

To capture this coveted market, brands need to place themselves where students spend most of their time, which is on college campuses. Marketing on campus promotes brand engagement and this can be done by utilizing numerous tactics. For example, a business can advertise in the school newspaper, employ brand ambassadors, offer student discounts, host giveaways and much more. As a leading provider of campus outdoor advertising solutions and mobile geo-targeting opportunities on college and university campuses nationwide, MSSmedia specializes in connecting brands with college students. The company offers advertisers a variety of outdoor advertising formats to reach the niche campus market in conjunction with on campus activations and digital marketing.

To learn how MSSmedia’s campus advertising solutions can help your college campaign, visit MSSmedia.com.

Shifting Trends in Millennial Holiday Shopping

By | Buying Power of Millennials | No Comments

Shifts in shopping have been occurring among millennials. Black Friday and Cyber Monday have great deals and are entertaining, but these days don’t have the effect they used to. Consumers are more knowledgeable of how to find sales and discounts. They don’t need these large shopping holidays to find what they want for less, because they are budget friendly year-round.

Shoppers have changed their expectations of what they expect from retailers. This past Black Friday saw more online sales than in store for the first time. So if people happened to shop on these days, it was mostly online. To try and track which brands were doing well among this generation, Teen Vogue and Goldman Sachs conducted a survey of millennial shoppers across the nation. Most of the retail brands were budget-friendly. Below is a list of the top 20 among young women.

  1. Forever 21
  2. Victoria’s Secret Pink
  3. Victoria’s Secret
  4. Nike
  5. Sephora
  6. MAC
  7. H&M
  8. Converse
  9. Urban Outfitters
  10. Target
  11. EOS
  12. Bath and Body Works
  13. Sephora Collection
  14. Urban Decay
  15. Vans
  16. Maybelline
  17. Louis Vuitton
  18. Steve Madden
  19. Marc Jacobs
  20. Free People

Colleges Are Being Transformed by Mobile Apps

By | Buying Power of Millennials, Campus Advertising, Engaging Millennials, Media Planning & Media Buying | No Comments

Today’s students have more technology than 30 years ago. Cellphones, tablets, laptops and more are commonplace on a college campus. With these devices come a multitude of mobile apps that open students up to a wealth of information from entertainment, news and much more. Popular apps range from social media, photo editing to fitness and education tools.

As a brand, these mobile apps are an opportunity to connect with students as they travel the campus. Traditional forms of advertising are still effective and incorporating mobile apps extends the longevity of the message. Below are some options to employ to target the college market with these apps.

1. QR Codes

Use QR codes on your creative to trigger downloads of your brand’s app or direct them to your website. QR codes can be scanned using an app found on many smart phones.

2. Offer Discounts

College students are always looking for discounts and deals. Have students download your app and in return, they can receive deals or discounts for your product or service. They will then have the app on their phone and an incentive to buy from you. This increases the likelihood that will be future customers.

3. Share on Social

Social apps are on the majority of college student’s phones so involving these highly used apps with your campaign will speak to this market. Millennials trust information that their friends recommend so having people share your content on social media increases the trustworthiness.

Attract New Hires with Creativity

By | Buying Power of Millennials, Campus Advertising, DNA of Millennials, Engaging Millennials | No Comments

Students go to college to earn a degree and pursue their dreams. They’re doing all of this work in hopes to get noticed by employers and vie for a position upon graduation. It’s an exciting, yet scary time for students. Not all employers are making themselves visible to the college market, but GE is stepping outside of the box to attract this demographic.

GE is thought to be your parent’s company, which means people think that it’s old school and not for the younger generation. On the contrary, GE is quite innovative and wants to prove this to millennials. They created TV ads on late night comedy shows such as “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” and “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.” There has been a lot of buzz around these late night shows, and GE wanted to capitalize on the audience.

Targeting this campaign by college campuses would be just as effective. The idea is to place your message where students are, and this target is watching comedy shows as well as walking around their campuses. Most students are also hyper alert to anything concerning a job so as a company looking to hire graduates or interns, these are great tactics to employ.

Coke Zero Brings Back Their Drinkable Billboard

By | Buying Power of Millennials, Campus Advertising, DNA of Millennials, Engaging Millennials, Media Planning & Media Buying | No Comments

Classes are in session, and with that comes the excitement for the upcoming football season. Tens of thousands of college students along with other enthusiastic fans will be in attendance to root for their respective teams. Thousands more will be tuning in via television, which presents an opportune time to sample your product with the college market. This is exactly what Coke Zero aims to do.

It’s said that Coke Zero was created for men because they were turned off by the word Diet. Taking a glance at Coke Zero and Diet Coke, one would think they are identical, but they do differ slightly. Although Zero’s launch 10 years ago had a different target, the brand has realized the opportunities of marketing to other targets. Thus, Coke Zero has made a name for themselves, becoming a $1 billion global brand in 2007 and continuing to keep their stature. Surprisingly, it hasn’t been due to giving out samples of their product, which brings us back to the vast sampling pool of people surrounding football games.

Their latest campaign capitalizes on the millennial market physically available at games by setting up billboards at certain stadiums and handing out branded gear with drink samples. In addition to these outdoor advertising efforts, Coke Zero is taking their drinkable campaign to TV. Through 10 new spots, ESPN personalities will ask viewers to open their Shazam app and hold it to the TV. The Coke Zero will appear to pour into a glass on the smartphone, and the viewer will be given a coupon for a free 20 oz. bottle redeemable at select retailers. Coke has accomplished the task of not only engaging fans in person, but involving fans at home, which extends their reach even further. Taking outdoor advertising and utilizing social media, Coke guaranteed success of their campaign.

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