Millennials are the first generation to grow up with social media. This makes them the most connected and online savvy generation ever. Marketing to millennials through their preferred medium can be tricky though. To help you navigate through the selfie world we've put together a “how to” guide that will make it easier for you to understand how to cater your content and products to this generation.

According to eMarketer 56% of millennials buy online at least half of the time compared to 45% of both Generation X and Baby Boomers. What's even more interesting, 21% of millennials almost always buy online after seeing an item in-store while just 10% of the older generations do. 

A Charles Schwab study shows that millennials are better with money than previous generations. The survey looked at four main categories: Financial planning, goal setting, saving and investing. Millennials scored a 51 overall and ranked higher than the national average in three of the four categories. 

Knowing this is a great start but how do you make sure Millennials are shopping in your online store?

Our guide will take you through the best tactics that work for marketing to millennials in 2019.

1. Optimize Content For Social

When it comes to Millennials, Social is the new SEO. Allocate a big junk of your marketing budget on social media platforms. Channels like Instagram drive the most significant traffic. Optimizing the content accordingly is key. According to Emerson Spartz, CEO of Dose, the highest share rates are seen on “short, captioned videos that nail the first ten seconds of content to hook the viewer”. Keep your content “short and sweet”, Millennials are less likely to watch long videos.

2. Visual Media is Everything

2. Visual Media is Everything

Image-focused platforms resonate with millennials. They grew up surrounded by social media and online technology. They are true digital natives. Image-focused social platforms spark product discovery. Visual channels are a way to discover everything from new products to new online boutiques.

From videos to photos to image-oriented news - image-focused content has become a real resource for time-pressed, fact-gathering millennial consumers who seek out ways to streamline their purchase decision-making process.

Consider running video ads on social media, and adding images to all of your Social shares. Make sure you are on visual-focussed platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, and Pinterest.

3. Instagram-Worthy Content and Products

Millennials favorite social network is Instagram. 64% of people aged 18 to 29 used the platform as of last year. Use a mix of Instagram posts and stories to create an exciting experience for your followers. Originality is key! Cater to the EQ not the IQ.

If you are trying to reach a younger audience Snapchat is your best bet. 60% of the 13-24-year-olds have the app installed on their phones.

This means that Snapchat is huge for both younger millennials and the Generation Z. If this is your target group make sure you are active and the platform this includes running ads. Sponsored filters are another way to create awareness with this target audience.

4. Identify With A Cause

4. Identify With A Cause

“Social identity” is huge with Millennials. Their purchasing habits prioritize memorable experiences and identifying with a cause. Appeal to their values and you will get their attention. Doing good in the world and making a difference is one of their core values. After all, the current vegan movement is led by Millennials for example. 

Get involved in a cause that relates to your brand, be genuine and easy to relate to.

5. Influencer Marketing

Social Media Influencers have a significant impact on the purchasing decisions of Millennials. Partnering with an influencer related to your industry has the potential reach an audience none of your ads ever would. Millennials relate to the authentic feeling of influencer content and prefer the personal nature of the social channels the influencers use. Just make sure you keep these things in mind.

If done thoughtfully an influencer post, doesn't feel like an ad, it feels more like a trusted friend recommending a product. It's important to maintain a mutually appropriate voice and tone when working with Social Influencers. This way you avoid appearing forced and risk losing credibility among this savvy audiences.

6. Build Trust. Be Authentic and Interact

6. Build Trust. Be Authentic and Interact

The BS detector is strong with this generation. One thing is for sure though, your message has to be genuine and real. Authenticity is key. Having said that, there is not a ‘one fits all’ formula. You have to A/B test to see what works best for your specific target group. Another thing to keep in mind: This group likes to interact, they like to be heard and expect an instant answer. If possible get a social media coordinator on board, it pays off in the long run. You will see a measurable increase in sales from people who you have interacted with throughout the marketing process.