Marketing to Millennials in Canada

Millennials represent a large segment of the Canadian population with buying power in multiple sectors.

Since Newsweek named the Boomer cohort, each subsequent generation has been labeled (Gen X, Millennial, Gen Z) as though age defines us. Generational experts are reshaping this way of thinking.

Canada has approximately 9.5 million Millennials, born between 1981-1996. What are the most effective ways to reach, engage and persuade these young Canadians?

Recent data has found a few insights that reveals that life stage, not age, is the key to marketing to this new generation. Those stages are: becoming an adult; still living at home; becoming a parent; and moving out of the parent’s home. All occurring with the use of social media and technology.

It’s important to remember that behind every revenue stream is a real person. Target the uniqueness of the individual, but don’t neglect to market to the collective interests of the group. An Ipsos Quebec quote stated that Millennials really want to feel like they are unique, so it’s important to communicate with them in a very personalized way; however, they are also attracted to group trends, and things that will get the agreement of their peers.

The Canadian Marketing Association prepared a recent report on “Marketing to Millennials” and found that the evolution of digital marketing strategies, techniques and tools now allow for 1:1 marketing. This tech-savvy generation requires tech-savvy marketing. Successful brands are creating targeted, personalized, relevant offers and messaging. Canadian Millennials use mobile to navigate nearly every aspect of their lives, from checking their account balances to exploring vacations. They’re even increasingly using mobile to make purchases: More than 1 in 3 said they had purchased a product on mobile in the prior month, according to a recent survey by GlobalWebIndex (GWI).

Even though Millennials have less income than older generations, they still have buying power. Their power is perhaps even more influential because of their social media use. Use social channels to cultivate Millennials into fans, even if they aren’t currently your target buyer.

Millennials are also very responsive to direct mail. Canada Post research says that all generations use and follow promotions via both physical and digital media. Most importantly, Millennials use physical media just as much as other generations. Plus, when Millennials have children in the home, there’s a 16% increase in engagement with print.

Facebook IQ conducted a survey and asked Millennials what made them feel proud to be Canadian, 81% said it was that their society is multicultural, 76% said it was that their society is accepting, and more than two-thirds (69%) said it was because Canadians are compassionate towards one another. Knowing what life stage Millennials are in and how they spend their time, whether they are home buyers, young professionals, online shoppers, parents, or activist voters— can ensure more effective marketing campaigns.

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