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Engaging Millennials

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!

back to school advertising not just a season

Back-to-School Advertising: Not Just a Season

By | Engaging Millennials | One Comment
Back to School Advertising. Carly Podolsky October 23, 2017

While “Back-to-School” season is commonly considered the months where college students get back into the swing of things after  summer break, marketing for this time period should not be considered a flash in time.

 

Not only do preparations for Back-to- School (B2S) begin as early as June for these age groups, but so does the purchasing. As a marketer your best knowledge is to understand B2S as more than a season, but a glimpse into your target market acting on the awareness you’ve garnered all year.

 

In order to understand the back to school marketplace, consider the following:

 

1. Back to School Shoppers = Year Long Consumers: In capturing back to school shoppers, consider that not only the student, but their parents’, friends and influencers are also consumers all year-round. Therefore, brand awareness, trust and loyalty must be formed before the summer and fall seasons.

 

2. The Back to School Audience = Stand Out: Our youngest generations encounter advertising of all forms. Not only are there radio and TV commercials vying for their attention, but there is a constant flux of media and advertising throughout any regular day-to-day activity of their day. Social media, desktop browsing, and smart phone applications are just a few means of reaching this group. With these all part of any day, make your impression stand out!

 

3. Take the Opportunity = Seize the Moment: Understanding that targeting a segmented audience is a valuable piece of the puzzle, but to strategize and compete is a more difficult component. The key is to understand the timing of your opportunity and seize it. Gaining longer-term recognition from this generation of back to school shoppers, means getting their attention now, the time is always now!

How to Win with Affluent Millennials

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Millennials are quickly becoming the largest generation by population size. They are also obtaining higher levels of affluence and impacting the way high end and luxury brands are approaching their consumers. According to a study, there are about 6.2 million millennial households that report earning an annual household income of at least $100,000. Although this number is shockingly high, this generation is set to become the most significant audience for luxury brands in the next five years.
Many outside of this generation emulate millennials because they are considered to be trendsetters. Within the millennial consumer, the trendsetters are the affluent millennials. They can afford the high fashion items and to travel around the world, which in turn makes their peers envious and want to try similar things. These affluent consumers are also more likely to post on social media to share their experiences, which brands try to leverage. If brands can appeal to the trendsetters, this can have a snowball effect and spread to multiple generations.
This answers the why of brands should target these consumers, but then comes the conversation of how to target them. It helps to understand that they are very independent. Rather than constantly communicating with them, brands should take the absent-but-present approach. This means brands should be available when needed, but not pushing the consumer too much. These people want to make decisions on their own and only look for support from brands when needed.

Move Out of the Way to Market to Millennials

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According to the Harvard Business Review, two traits that tap into the fundamental DNA of most millennials are sociability and urgency. Nike has done a great job of marrying these two traits with their Nike+ app. The app allows runners to track and share their paths on social sites such as Twitter and Facebook. It’s not only the fact that users can share their journey with their social following, but if a user liked your post while running, the runner would hear cheers and applause in their headphones. This allows friends and users to give something to one another without the brand being directly involved. They are simply using the brand’s platform, but doing the rest on their own.

Interactions like these play on the two main traits of urgency and sociability. The runner can post their path instantly and the congratulatory aspect brings the social factor. Although the app has been out for a few years, not many brands have followed suit.Buzzfeed has been able to capitalize on the social aspect. The site uses native content to attract millennials that share with their friends, which in turn draws brands and advertisers.

Once you have attracted the audience and engaged them, the next step is to have a sense of urgency. You want them to share your content without being prompted. This requires creating shareable content that the audience wants others to see and/or experience with them. If they do this, they’ll most likely come back for more. Buzzfeed learned this quickly when they created their polls and quizzes that allowed user to self-identify with others in the community. Fans who enjoy taking a quiz surrounding a topic that interests them will most likely share with others. For example, Disney fans or movie lovers might enjoy the quiz “What Would a  Disney Movie of Your Life Be Like?”

If brands were able to harness the connection between sharing and urgency among millennial communities, they would be able to target this generation and have them be truly engaged with the brand. These users would be engaged without feeling the pressure of a brand pushing something on them, because they are making the move themselves. If done correctly, it would resemble a brand as the host of a party, but the host doesn’t have to put in much effort. The brand (host) would understand the commonalities of each guest and use them to connect one another. The rest lies in the interactions of the guests as the host observes from a distance. Brands move out of the way and let the users connect and interact. Brands such as Nike and Buzzfeed already understand and implement this, but other millennial brands can utilize this as well and capture the attention of this transient generation.

Attract Students During an Election Year

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It’s election year and there’s been a lot of talk about millennial voters and the impact they have on elections. This entices politicians, brands and companies alike to get their name in front of this generation. With the busy lives that students leads, one of the best tactics is to literally be where they are, which is on campus. As a brand, you may want to remain neutral with political party affiliation, but it is a great opportunity to engage in the conversation. Below are a few ideas to become involved and engage this target audience.

1. Host Contests

A little friendly competition is always great. Contests allow students to learn more about your product or service while having fun. Providing prizes and incentives will increase engagement and likability for your brand.

2. Give Out Free Items

Who doesn’t love a free gift? Giving out samples of your product or a branded item attracts most people. For example, students have papers, notes and more to save so handing out free branded USBs provides students with a necessity and allows your brand to live with the student after your initial interaction. There are multiple options of items to hand out. Choose the best that fits your industry.

3. Photo Booths

It’s the decade of selfies and students are constantly sharing pictures with their friends on social media and more. Photo booths allow you to have people take pictures with your brand integrated with props, border of the printout, etc.

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.

Why Instagram is Important

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

Facebook conducted a survey to understand the reasons why millennials are so obsessed with Instagram. Yes, they are not as active on Facebook as people may think, but they definitely love Facebook owned Instagram. After surveying millennials in 7 countries, Facebook uncovered the following results.

Millennials want visuals rather than text. They want pictures to depict what a brand represents rather than a typical ad. They also want to be able to view a lot of content and scroll fast. 73% of Instagram users are between 15 and 35 years old and they check the social platform throughout the entire day. 69% check at home, 39% while going to sleep and 33% when they wake up.

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Facebook also uncovered that 48% of users follow a brand because the content is interesting or funny, 62% follow because they love the brand and 54% like to discover new things. In addition to getting followers, brands must stand out amongst the multitude of other brands. To accomplish this, below are some rules to follow:

  1. Be authentic
  2. Write an interesting bio with your website in it
  3. Use a smart #hashtag
  4. Create a contest or campaign to engage and reward your most active fans
  5. Feature your best fans
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