In the not so distant future, Generation Y will constitute a much greater buying power that was once dominated by the Baby Boomers. Generation Y (or Gen Y) will surpass any other generations before it. Gen Y will be the largest buyers of products, which power our economy. Gen Y values its empowerment as well as its community. Gen Y is self-reliant, skeptical at times but most importantly valuing its social connections. Growing up in an environment that is tech-driven has carved a path leading to different views as opposed to prior generations.
Gen Y significantly relies on media interaction more than any other prior generation. Statistically speaking, less than half of people born after 1980 read a daily newspaper, as opposed to the nearly 60 percent of Baby Boomer who do. More than a quarter of 18-34 year olds watch Internet Television. This completely separates them from the Baby Boomer and Generation X crowd. Over 90 percent of Gen Y have admitted to sleeping with their smartphones or laptops at night.
Smartphones are revolutionizing the way people make purchases and consumers are extremely aware of this. A study reported that mobile marketing swayed decision-making by allowing the consumer to compare prices while shopping. Others have admitted that they use their smartphones for product information. Almost half of smartphone users have confessed to using their mobile search on a daily basis.
These numbers are only expected to rise. Savvy digital marketers are using texts, coupon delivery to smartphones and e-newsletters to engage their consumers in their marketing campaigns. For instance:
Texting – Gen Y sends around 2,200 texts on a monthly basis. Text messages are a great way for marketing campaigns to get their foot-in-the-door. SMS text numbers have been set up so a customer can be notified of any special promotions via text message. This type of communication is becoming more effectively used by real estate agencies and automotive dealerships, just to name a few.
Email – Smartphones allow companies reach their mobile consumers directly through e-newsletters and emails. It’s extremely important for such items to reach the consumer on a personal level; otherwise the consumer could unsubscribe or delete them before ever even reading them. Deleting e-newsletters and emails is also becoming easier to do on mobile devices and marketers are painfully aware of this. A few examples of these would be travel agencies providing summer traveling tips for vacationers or a bank providing crucial information during tax season.
Mobile and Microsites – Microsites are beginning to build in popularity, although they are still relatively new. Quite a few microsite design companies have opened in the past few years, their promise is for higher SEO (search engine optimized) rankings and a better understanding of who visits their sites.
Coupons – Offering coupons through mobile devices has become much more prominent over the past few years. Such coupons can either be emailed or downloaded directly to a mobile device. This is an easy way to reach an on-th-go customer. Certain companies, such as Target offer eCoupons, which can be scanned directly from the mobile phone at the register for a customer to receive a discounted price on their items.
Social Networking – Through social applications such as Facebook, Foresquare and Twitter, mobile campaigns are able to instantly reach the consumer. Check-in services are used by customers to tag their location, this encourages others to visit those specific locations as well. Some companies even reward those customers for using check-in services with prizes, coupons as well as other incentives.
All of these ways of communication are beneficial for marketers who wish to reach Gen Y, however there are still other generations out there before Gen Y who are becoming more and more advanced in the mobile market every day. When you mobile market to customers, you are able to tie all channels together and connect all forms of advertising at once, all on a device which consumers carry with them. So it seems that frequency of communication and content are crucial to making marketing campaign successful.