Generation Y [Millennials]: Born in between [1980 – 2000]
As days, weeks, months, and years fly by, we tend to forget we are also aging. As the baby boomer generation has and continues to make their mark in the world, the generation’s children are old enough to change the world. Businesses have to be aware of who they are, why they are important, what drives them, and how to cater to their needs. Successfully investing time researching and understanding the upcoming generation will be beneficial to the future of your business. According to Ernst & Young Global Hospitality Insights 2014, Generation Y currently takes up roughly 79 million people in the US population, and its oldest members are only 33 years old. The research also states that approximately 20% of Millennials are just entering peak spending ages, while 50% will account for all employees worldwide in the next four years. The key to understanding Generation Y is considering why they are different than their predecessors. Here are some fundamental persona characteristics that make Generation Y different:
- Need for Speed: Millennials love quick gratification! Whether its a like on Facebook/Instagram, or a favorite on Twitter, Millennials are used to immediate feedback. This generation has grown up with the world virtually in their hands. With the use of Google, questions and problems are solved immediately. The advances of technology have made quick service no longer an option, but a commodity. Face- to- face contact is not nearly as important as speed. It is important to learn how to act efficiently and effectively when serving Gen Y.
- Enthusiastic Autobiographer: This generation loves to share life experiences with friends, family, and even strangers on social sites. Their goal is to share interesting content that will drive conversation and a response from friends and followers. This characteristic could bring positive or negative feedback to your business. Positive feedback could potentially earn you free, powerful peer-to- peer marketing!
- Curious Explorer: Since many Millennials are the result of the joining of two individuals of different cultures, they have an explicable curiosity to explore the world. This generation is a lot more accepting of “different,” and enjoy any experience that will help them understand foreign customs better. Due to Gen Y’s curiosity, they love creative and new ideas. This trait is important to consider when marketing your business.
- Secret Critic: Depending on your industry, there is a platform for others to evaluate your business. Whether it’s Yelp or TripAdvisor, GenY enjoys reviewing and sharing their experience with others. Millennials are less likely to complain in person and would rather quickly post critical feedback online.
- Impulsive Shoppers: As previously mentioned Millennials are used to having the world at their fingertips. Click to buy options through their smart phones allows Gen Y to be very comfortable with last- minute decision making. Providing easy online shopping options could prove to be practical in attracting Gen Y.
- Informed Shopper: Constant internet connection allows for extensive research on anything that may come to mind. While shopping Gen Y likes to quickly evaluate the market’s characteristics. Businesses who provide short but informative material about products or services satisfy Gen Ys needs. Millennials are smart shoppers and because of their young age tend to be on a budget. Information is power for these savvy shoppers.
- Cause Driven: Gen Y has learned from predecessors and live to make a difference. Ernst & Young Global Hospitality Insights 2014 states, “They like the idea that their money is not just spent for their own enjoyment, but is going toward a program that helps make the world a better place.” This way of living transmits into Millennials everyday life. They strongly hold on to their beliefs and identify with businesses with similar ideas.