Thank you to the team at GYBCLE for the opportunity to share on one of my favorite topics. View the full video here and below and learn more about this unique program for emerging content creators at GYBCLE.com!
It used to be “the millennials are coming.”
Today it’s “the millennials are wrinkling.”
Before we reach “the millennials are retiring,” now is the time to reframe the conversations you’re having about this not-so-mysterious age bracket, also known as Generation Y.
This Digiday article by Tanya Dua, features how the Perricone MD skincare brand is engaging a younger — but indeed aging — audience through new channels and increased investments in digital marketing spend and talent.
Per the article and according to the NPD Group, Inc., “In particular, NPD found that millennial consumers are most likely to seek products with “doctor endorsements and natural ingredients.” Older consumers apparently just let it rip with whatever….”
The headline caught my eye, as this article is insightful in its own right with lifestyle brands reigning supreme through social and digital means, while also serving as a microcosm of the larger conversation on reaching millennials (who also happen to be the largest group in our workforce).
Perhaps we should be all more concerned with the natural loss of elasticity in our faces, necks and hands.
Frankly, and like I imagine the majority of my peers, I’m more consumed in understanding the sources of stress that are causing these worry lines.
Do you, your product, or your service deliver hope to the omnipresent fears of this generation?
Do you employ, or intend to employ digital or mobile marketing tactics to deliver your message?
We can all agree that it takes more than a directive to start “Twittering,” or find college students that know how “to Facebook.”
Reaching this blanket audience, who apply the verb filter to every second of the day, is no small task, especially if you aren’t a lifestyle brand with decades of loyal customers to back you up.
In Christopher Penn’s Top Marketing Skills of 2017 post, he lays out conditions leading to less effectiveness in marketing efforts.
He goes on to share what will be important, including cloud/distributed computing, software integration, mobile development, data presentation and more. Read the full post if you dare.
For some, this future state of marketing and access is a reality; for many, it’s a vision or foundation of a five-year plan being wielded as we speak (you know, to be revisited when the first millennials start hitting the big 4-0).
However, you need not be as discouraged as the data suggests. Start by having more adult conversations about connecting this rapidly maturing audience.
For myself, technically a member of Gen Y this whole time, the need for a different mindset didn’t hit home until I started seeing those in my college graduating class and peer networks attaining powerful decision-making roles: for both their organizations, or for businesses they had launched and grown.
Until then I’d been focused on influencing those of generations before me to take digital marketing ideas and innovations seriously. It takes less convincing today.
Now, with our generation looking our mutual crows’ feet in the eye, my sights are turned toward understanding the new generation entering the workforce, and how we will work together.
Now will someone teach me how to do a Snapchat face swap with my high school yearbook photo already?
More on Millennial Marketing:
The struggle is real: Marketing to Millennials: MarketingLand
8 tips for marketing to millennials online: CIO
What Marketers Need to Know About Millennials in 2016: AMA.org
6 Things To Know About Marketing To Millennials: Forbes.com
Christina Capadona-Schmitz (@ChristinaCS & @DownWithSpitUp) leads marketing communications for Oswald Companies, a risk management and financial services company in Cleveland, Ohio. She is on the clock 24/7 with her parenting resource blog www.DownWithSpitUp.com, among other creative pursuits and community endeavors. Connect with her on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/christinacapadonaschmitz.
One Sunday summer morning, as I caught up on work while my kids were coloring on the deck next to me, my five-year-old son runs up and says:
"Do you know we all have logos? Daddy's logo is a star and mommy's logo is a heart."
Out of nowhere my son had developed a fascination with branding. Now considering my line of work, I swear this was unprompted, as on his own he began pointing out recognizable logos from restaurants and shopping chains on car rides, and identifying symbols for characters on his favorite TV shows and movies.
Of course I probed on, “Why do you say that?
“Daddy's a police officer and the star represents that…”
“Well, what about the heart?”
“Ahhh, you’re a heart because you love me!” he said with a laugh.
Say and think what you will about the sometimes trite, and often over-used, term "personal branding," but it does exist, and in the smallest of world perspectives.
Although we're highly exposed daily, our self awareness isn't always in tune. Sometimes we need an unfiltered view to understand what values we are expressing to those around us.
To me, his expression of the heart to represent me spoke volumes, as I sat there typing away on my laptop, feeling the constant strain of supporting my family, my work, my personal development. On the whole; it was the heart he saw.
“My brother’s logo is all different and wild colors,” as he ran over to our three-year-old who was jumping and yelling on the jungle gym. Later, he scribbled the colors he saw of this free spirited soul to whom provides much adventure daily to his life. (pictured above).
The big question remained.
“So, what about your logo?”
He paused. Then matter-of-factly stated, “My logo is a smiley face and a mad face with two arrows going back and forth between them,” then ran back off to play with his brother on the jungle gym.
I guess big feelings start early, run deep, and don’t end once we outgrow childhood.
The emotional struggles we have within ourselves, and the connections we have to each other, explained through simpler means, can help bring a little order to chaos.
If even the most naive of eyes can notice, how do you think the wiser eyes see you: your clients, your prospects, your employees? What marks do they see that represent you, your work, your associations to ideas, interests and organizations.
As modern communicators we're told to choose visuals over words, especially for web-based consumption by impatient consumers. But it's the context, the stories, the expressions, the experiences that give life to the graphic representations.
Word and design marks only offer consistency in the surface look; it’s the everyday behaviors and experiences that make a brand what it is, be it product, service or personal.
Want to know your personal brand, and the authentic you to share with the world and stand out? Just ask yourself how a child would "brand you.”
Or better yet, find a five year old (with an early penchant for marketing communications at that) and ask them yourself.
Christina Capadona-Schmitz (@ChristinaCS & @DownWithSpitUp) leads marketing communications for Oswald Companies, a risk management and financial services company in Cleveland, Ohio.
She is on the clock 24/7 with her parenting resource blog www.DownWithSpitUp.com, among other creative pursuits and community endeavors. Connect with her on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/christinacapadonaschmitz.