As I was reading an article on marketing to Millennials recently, it struck me in a way it hasn’t before. When I look around me, it seems that all I see are Millennials. In 2019, Millennialsoutnumbered Boomers in the US population, and Millennials and Gen Z are said to account for more than one-third of the workforce (38%). When we are talking about Millennials, we are talking about us.
If I’m a Millennial reading an article or a blog post about marketing to Millennials, what am I thinking? (I’m asking because I’m not a Millennial.) Am I thinking it’s accurate? Or, since Millennials outnumber members of all of the other generations, am I thinking that it’s just a bit ridiculous, that the minority shouldn’t have the audacity to tell the majority how to market to themselves? It’s just a thought.
Those of us more “seasoned” industry folks first started writing about marketing to this demographic group, defined as those 24 to 39 years old, more than a decade ago when their habits, preferences, and purchasing power were still in the formative stages. We were all guessing what their impact would be. Today, Millennials are the dominant market influencers. They are the ones buying houses, furniture, clothing for their children, and so on. They are the ones shaping much of the social conversation.
When you walk into a business, you see Millennials. They hold those middle-management jobs, those outward-facing sales jobs, and are the ones who are the face of the shops and businesses we purchase from, sell to, and interact with on a daily basis. Is it time to stop referring to Millennials as a demographic group and simply refer to them as “the consumers of today” and the rest of us as the outliers who need special marketing attention?
It’s a flip-flop in how we talk about this generation, but then, who is “we” anyway? A good percentage of you reading this post are Millennials. How does the “marketing to Millennials” content strike you? What do you think? Is it time for us non-Millennials to start writing “how to market to Boomers” articles instead?