Transitioning Millennials

As Baby Boomers continue to down-size into smaller homes, furniture companies need to focus on Millennials – the population born between 1980 and 2000. Millennials account for over 79 million people and pump over $170 billion into the economy every year. This group is now transitioning; they’re starting families, buying homes… and furniture!

Reaching this audience will require an “untraditional” approach to marketing. One of the most unique aspects of Millennials is their use of technology and social media to gather information. Here’s just a few of the facts:

  • 90% conduct research online
  • 67% receive their news online
  • 64% send instant messages
  • 60% send & receive text messages
  • 52% read blogs
  • They also read 2,300 web pages, 1,881 Facebook profiles, and write 500 pages of email.

Here are 4 ideas furniture retailers can use to digitally connect with tech-savvy Millennials:

1: Make Yourself Easy To Find Online

Millennials use online resources for pre-purchase research. They explore product features and information, look at company reviews and compare sites. Some sources report that Millennials are 5 times more likely to be influenced by retargeting tactics (banner and pop-up ads) that they encounter during the research process. (5 times more likely to be influenced by retargeting than what?—retargeting versus ?)

These are a few of the most popular online resources used by Millennials when doing pre-purchase research:

  • 49% will use search engines
  • 36% will visit retailer websites
  • 33% will read reviews from real customers
  • 29% will visit manufacturer websites
  • 26% will read professional reviews
  • 18% will check out social media
  • 12% will read relevant blogs

2: Use Social Media

Social media is the modern-day “word of mouth” advertising. According to eMarketer, 84% of Millennials use social media. They are looking for brands they can engage with and who provide interesting content. 62% of Millennials state that they are more likely to become brand loyal if a company engages with them, sincerely, on social media.

3: Be Mobile

Millennials spend 14 percent more time on their mobile devices when compared to other age segments. They use their smartphones and tablets to research, shop and compare prices. Your website MUST BE MOBILE FRIENDLY! Here’s why:

  • 27% will leave your site if it’s not optimized for mobile devices
  • 75% of Millennials have their phone in-hand when shopping in a store

4: Invest in building brand loyalty

Many retailers have the misconception that Millennials lack brand loyalty. The reality is, they can be loyal– they just want something in return. Customer service, personalized promotions and discounts are the most popular. 8 out of 10 Millennials say they are highly influenced by coupons sent to their homes in addition to mobile banners. More brands are also rewarding social behaviors – such as tweeting, posting, checking-in, and sharing.

Be sure that any type of loyalty program is compatible with mobile – otherwise, you will be missing your mark with this group.

The transition of the Millennials is happening now. Show them that you understand their unique shopping habits and needs. That starts with incorporating more online, social and mobile strategies into your marketing mix.