Millennials Need All Five Senses Considered

When marketing to millennials, brands must consider all five senses. Their eyes are always looking, ears are always listening and fingers are always, ALWAYS typing, but figuring out how to tap in with millennials is an ongoing challenge for marketers. They must be met exactly where their attention is with an authentic, genuine message promoted by someone they trust. So let’s check in to their five senses…

Sight: What are they watching? 

Digital is the BEST way to reach millennials. This has been said over and over. But the facts remain:

  • There will be 78 million millennial digital video viewers, representing more than 92% of all U.S. millennial Internet users, according to eMarketer.
  • The above is coupled with the fact that of millennials who are consuming traditional TV, 65% are using a second, third, or more screens to consume content simultaneously, according to Verizon.
  • With multiple screens vying for their attention, millennials are texting while watching TV, or watching digital video as they video chat with friends, or engaging with more screens than just that. How about that AMC Theaters allowing texting during movies scare? Oh, for goodness sake.

With that, we know the connection to content is constant.

In today’s influential world, Millennials are more likely to listen to and be influenced by their favorite YouTube superstars compared to professional athletes. According to VideoInk in 2015, millennials watch 11.3 hours of free online video per week and 8.3 hours of TV per week on average. In the YouTube vs. TV battle, marketers should be mindful that millennials hail YouTube as the ultimate winner.

Hearing: What are they listening to?

In terms of music, Millennials are discovering and enjoying music differently than the generations before them. Younger listeners spend on average 25 hours a week streaming music from a variety of online services, according to Vevo’s new “Music Fan Report”.



Brands need to be sure they’re mixing things up where these Millennials ears are ringing.

Touch: What methods are they using to communicate?

A millennial’s communication originates in their hands. Everything starts on their mobile phones, including snaps, Facebook posts, Instagram tags, and Tweets.  89% of adults ages 18-29 use some form of social media, according to the Pew Research Center. Millennials are finding new ways to engage with their friends, family, and their communities every day. That means that brands and other organizations must do the same to stay relevant and in front of their target audiences. Snapchat is a great example of a company leading the way, instead of following trends and adapting.

Taste: How do millennials prefer their content?

Of course content has to be informative, enjoyable, passionate, funny, original and unexpected, but for brands – IT NEEDS TO BE SHAREABLE. Period. But what do they REALLY like? AdWeek hit up many millennials and summed up a few things – click the image:


Via AdWeek

Smell: What products are they ultimately choosing, and why?

Millennials may not be relying only on their noses to remember their favorite products, they can sniff out when they’re being marketed to. According to Animoto, two out of three say that they will stop watching a video if they feel the tone is too promotional. Brand loyalty is influenced heavily by whether they think they can trust a brand and by what others highly recommend to them, from the shoes on their feet to the snacks they eat and the apparel they wear. Fifty percent of millennials say that being real, genuine and authentic are the most important factors with regards to distinguishing favorite brands, products or services. Keller Fay Group has enormous amounts of data on this group.

To sum up, Millennials are consuming original content that has an authentic voice, connects to them personally and provides a message that they relate to and possible share. In order to succeed, brands need to be active & multi-sensory in the space that millennials are interacting otherwise they just won’t reach this demographic holistically.

The Importance of the Hashtag

We recently were asked by a client to explain the importance of using hashtags. It was a good challenge and it really got us thinking about how we track and measure the effectiveness of our programs both from a live and in-person standpoint, as well as from a social media and virality standpoint.

Everywhere you look, hashtags are being used. Their use in social media messaging helps to sort, classify and call attention to what you’re saying online. Hashtags empower your messages, making them part of a global multi-platform conversation.

The hashtag has been a key topic for many social media insight stories, and also the butt of many jokes. One of the most famous blew up the internet last September thanks to Jimmy Fallon, Justin Timberlake, and let’s not forget Quest Love – see infamous video here.

And yes, Ladies and Gentlemen, “hashtag” is now in the 2014 Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary, along with Selfie, Tweep and 147 other New Words.

While brands are still getting the hang of hashtags, they tend to change them often (as much as with every tweet) and really only get away with that because they don’t have to care if they have a follower base in the millions. But when you are hoping for outreach in the tens of thousands (a normal marketing campaign goal for most brands and agencies) then hashtag tracking and consistency becomes something of an important factor.

But don’t lose sight of how other hashtags play a role in your campaign results. It is not just your hashtag you need to track, but other hashtags that might make a difference. For instance, anything from your competitors hashtags surrounding a similar campaign to common misspellings of your hashtags.

Being able to track and consolidate as much historical and real-time hashtag data is also important. And being able to pick out major influencers (the empty vessel of a celebrity for instance; big reach, low impact) from your campaign hashtag is a primary concern for analytics down the road. Not to mention the competitive analysis with the aforementioned competitors, who most likely didn’t take all variables into account.

So remember to #InsertHashtagHere.