Millennial is a quite broad term if you ask me. There’s a huge diversity. It basically covers anything from a 15 year old selfie-obsessed Danish schoolgirl, to a 35 year old home-owning American family guy.
So how could your content marketing appeal to me as a millennial? Well, let me tell you what will appeal to all of us: content that connects and engages with us. And no content is more engaging than the one tailored to our individual interests.
I’m personally interested in knowing when the new Chanel perfume or L’Oréal mascara will be out in the nearest shop. I’m interested in getting inspired by different makeup tutorials with my favourite products. And, I’m interested in knowing when my favourite products are on sale.
My interests doesn’t necessarily match Sarah’s interests. Well… We might have some things in common like: being interested in knowing when our favourite products are on sale. But, Sarah might want that piece of information through a newsletter, whereas I prefer interaction via social media. Sarah might not be encouraged to buy products when watching a makeup tutorial, but instead by having a sales rep applying her makeup and giving her some tips. And our interests are not even close to Joe’s interests. Well… Unless it’s his girlfriend’s birthday and he got motivated to get her the new shimmery eyeshadow-kit.
Okay, enough makeup talk. My point is, your content has to be personal if you want to engage with us. And that requires you knowing us. This means understanding our concerns, behavior and motivation.
I think I got to the point where you are probably thinking, “How the heck are the Ninja Turtles going to help me?” well, the four Ninja Turtles, which was one of my most favourite Sunday morning cartoons, form four potential millennial personality types. Each of the turtles’ personalities could be used to create personas, ultimately assisting you in creating content that will appeal to the individual millennial.
Donatello (Donnie) – the innovative one
Donnie is a scientist, an engineer and an inventor. The brain in his team. He is very skilled and gets very annoyed when technology fails or performs ineffectively.
Does Donnie remind you of a bright and ingenious tech-savvy millennial? I bet so.
Donatello-millennials are not in love with digital, they’re obsessed! 80 % still sleep with their phones next to them at night, browsing through recommend products and placing orders. Sure, online shopping has it’s benefits for these personas. But there’s still something about physically interacting with products that draws them into physical stores, where most of their purchases are still made.
When marketing to Donatello-millennials consider letting the omni-channel experience into your store. You need to recognize their need to be connected and use their palm-sticking devices all the time – even inside your store.
Consider using in-store technology (Beacons for instance) to offer them a tailored connected in-store experience, by sending them relevant personalized promotions, offers and product news on their phones based on their shopping preferences as they move around your stores.
Did you know around 21,6 % of these uber-connected customers are influenced by a store touch screen display? This means huge opportunities my friend. How about a connected mirror that tells the story of your products and gives product recommendations? Any millennials who would love that?
With Donnie, never discount content and wearable tech. Trust me. Many of these millennials have been dreaming about wearable communication ever since they watched the Power Rangers! (can’t lie I’m defiantly one of them!) So try to experiment with email and geo-targeted campaigns on wearable devices, this gives the ability to deliver hyper-targeted ads to your customers based on their location.
Leonardo (Leo) – the orderly one
Leonardo is logical and strategic. He is the most serious, structured and disciplined one, which makes him the leader of the Turtles.
Like Donnie, Leo is very educated. In fact, Leonardo-like millennials are the most educated and disciplined generation in history. Having technology in their DNA, these personas view the future of education as being more virtual. Did you know that 50 % of millennial college students said that they don’t need a physical classroom and 53 % believe that online colleges are reputable. These results are from a survey conducted by Millennial Branding in 2013.
So marketers, how are you going to stand out with your content marketing in today's over crowded talent pool?
Let me give you a hint, marketing is very much linked to education – it’s about informing your audience about your products and services, with the intention to develop familiarity, understanding and appreciation. You can do just that by providing webinars!
Webinars are ideal for busy Leonardo-millennials, because they offer convenience. Your audience can in just a couple of clicks join your content and if necessary watch it at a later point. Unlike written content, webinars include ‘real people’ presenting, which offers a meaningful connection, as viewers can interact with presenters, ask questions and converse with peers.
Finally, Leonardo-millennials like to be a part of a larger ‘happening’, so having people from all around the world gathered in your online presentation, will immediately generates a buzz with these personas.
Michelangelo (Mikey) – the fun one
Probably one of my favourite Turtles. Mikey is an easygoing free-spirited and pizza loving Turtle. He is very enthusiastic about pretty much everything, which also makes him extremely creative. Being labelled “a wild party dude” of his brothers, he is very social and constantly seeks social acceptance.
Michelangelo-millennials are all over social media, to connect with their peers and share their experiences. Who else do you think they want to connect with? You! Did you now that 63 % of these personas stay updated on brands through social media? And that 43 % have liked more than 20 brands on Facebook? (I think I have liked over 100)
Do you now what this means? When it comes to reaching Mikey never, underestimate the power of social media.
Try to get playful with your content. Michelangelo-millennials love to see the creative and fun side of your brand. They love playful mash-ups and creative expressions that gets them involved – yes, mems!
Consider making those millennials ‘do something with your content’ rather than just consuming it. With that, I mean using quizzes, so they can better engage with your content. Besides, Mikey-types love to share almost everything they do. They share pictures of their sandwiches, frozen yogurt, products etc. – everything! So be sure you make it possible for them to share quiz results or any other content, because it is critical!
It’s no secret that many millennials are influenced by peers and strangers opinions about your brand. They tend to ask their friends, read reviews and even ask your social media audience for product input before considering interacting with you. So make sure you share the positive world of mouth. And if you want to take this a step further, try to involve Mikey.
How? Remember I mentioned millennials like to share stuff? Try reposting their photos with your products. If a Michelangelo-millennial has bought a cute dress or suit from you, share it! This process is beneficial for both you and your Mikeys. Because they will experience the thrill of seeing their own/friends' photos on your feed and get more exposure of their account, while you’ll start engaging with your audience on a more personal level and get valuable content. This process will turn Mikey and his friends into brand advocates who will help you expand your business influence online.
Raphael (Raph) – the badass
Raph is the badass Turtle. He has an extremely short temper, is very sarcastic, fierce and has a sense of humor that is totally deadpan!
Raphael-millennials have never bought something based on a TV commercial. They never recall once in their life’s of having clicked on banner ads. And they get annoyed when receiving any type of commercials.
If you want to reach Raphael-millennials, building relationships with your audience is very critical. That means whether on the phone, in person, or online, communicating with you should feel consistent — in other words, you must have an identity that runs through everything you do. As I said they hate advertisement. So you should stop constantly communicating about selling your products. This persona wants something deeper than that; they want to feel like you are building a relationship with them as individuals, not just as consumers.
So if you want to reach Raph make sure your content is story-driven. Focus on your brand’s artistic side, your passions and especially your failures. Because in the end an authentic voice matters!
We millennials aren’t necessary a one-size-fits-all-audience, we are different. Of course, the four Ninja Turtles aren’t the only subtypes that exists, but you have to admit this division is a fun starting point! Do any of these Turtles look familiar to you? Do they remind you of your millennial customers? Maybe you have both Leo and Raph as central customers? Or maybe you have a mix, you could possibly have a Donnangelo? A Leotello? Or a Raphanardo?