Every movement begins with a moment.
Millennials engage with social media habitually, often checking their profiles daily (or even hourly) from their mobile devices, tablets or laptops. Despite their consistent presence, social businesses have faced many challenges connecting with this particular audience. One key issue: Following businesses through social media is not a priority for Millennials, who prefer to use it to connect with friends and follow celebrities. So how can a business earn the attention of this ubiquitous yet elusive audience and keep them coming back for more?
Here are a few strategies your business can implement to engage this tough-to-reach audience through a social campaign.
1. Share bite-sized information that will resonate with this demographic.
Millennials tend to have limited attention spans and do not want to spend more time than necessary on any given task. Therefore, if a message is too long and complicated to comprehend, this audience will most likely ignore it. The key is to present simple, easy-to-digest messages that will quickly grab this group’s interest. When creating copy for your business’ social campaign, keep it short and sweet. If applicable, use multimedia snackable content, such as short-form videos, to easily explain a concept.
If you’re a banking company, for example, you could use simple, step-by-step visuals or graphics to provide practical tips on saving money. This information is likely to resonate well with this audience, since most Millennials aren’t breaking the bank yet. And serving it up in an easy-to-understand format that doesn’t take much effort to engage with and understand is even better.
2. Encourage them to share their stories.
Most people use their social channels to talk about their lives and share their personal experiences. Millennials are no different. In order for a brand to create an effective conversation with fans and followers, it needs to prompt them to join the chatter and share their stories on a given topic. Consider including prompts in your post copy to spark fan responses. They will be encouraged to join the discussion by seeing these calls to action.
For example, if you’re a restaurant wanting to know which of your menu items Millennials like best, mention a recently added dish and, at the end of the post, ask your followers or fans to share their favorites. Being inquisitive will help you gather the feedback you need while generating valuable engagement.
3. Respond to Millennials in real-time — and every time — to create a one-on-one conversation and experience.
Everyone wants to feel as though their questions and comments are being heard, especially Millennials. If someone takes the time to write a comment or express an opinion, he or she is looking for a personal response. If a follower states a concern or is negative, especially about the brand, it is vital to have someone respond to and reassure that person.
Answer everyone — especially Millennials — who comments and shares an experience, and be sure to respond as soon as possible. If budget allows, give a personalized reward to the fan. For example, imagine you are a logistics company. Earlier this morning, one of your followers sent out a tweet directed at your Twitter handle praising your efforts in sustainability. In this scenario, you would quickly reply to that follower and ask him to direct message his address to receive some branded swag — your way of thanking him for his support. Commonly known as surprise and delight, this tactic not only makes a follower or fan feel valued, but also motivates them to keep up with the brand and pay attention for more information and incentives.
When creating content or an entire campaign aimed at Millennials, consider implementing one or all of these tactics into the overall strategy. If budget allows, capitalize on the personalized surprise and delight responses mentioned in the third tactic. If money is indeed an object, the very least you can do is deliver content that matters to Millennials. Providing timely answers to their questions and comments, even if a reward isn’t included, goes a long way in developing brand loyalty and shareable content, which ultimately leads to more fans and followers.
Stephanie Cook is Associate Social Engagement Coordinator at Moxie.
This article was originally published on MediaPost's Engage:GenY blog on 08/15/14.
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