Before writing web page content intended for those sometimes exasperating but always fascinating group of young adults dubbed “Millenials,” marketing copywriters need to understand the primary characteristics of this demographic and why the Millenial crowd is important to the success of a business.
Also referred to as Generation Y, Millenials are especially compelling because they are the first generation to be heavily influenced by digital technology. Anyone born after 1980 experienced a noisy childhood echoing with sounds of arcade games, walkmans, beepers and the original Nintendo Entertainment System. Millenials also adapted to sweeping social changes comparable to the passionate upheavals of the 1960s, including the acceptance of divorce and women as breadwinners. Additionally, the term “latch-key” kids emerged from families needing two incomes to survive in the fluctating economies of the ’80s and ’90s. Consequently, most Millenials developed a sense of independence, adaptibility and “tribalness” that makes their perception of the world distinct from all other generations’.
Following their innate link to technology, Millenials now embrace social media sites as a way to achieve a feeling of familial intimacy and connectedness that has dissipated over the past 20 years. When writing web page content marketed towards Millenials, copywriters should realize that most Millenials get almost all their information from sites like Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr, so content should resemble something you would normally read on these sites—short, punchy and sincere.
Integrating postmodern ideas and a quirky sense of humor with minimalist writing will appeal to GenYs who are not impressed with the brilliance of overly detailed product descriptions. Although content writers do not need to pen Twitter-like phrases under 140 characters to hold the attention of a GenY, writers do need to keep sentences as spare as possible, ditch extraneous punctuation and avoid the “randomness” trap.
Contrary to advertisements that depict Millenials as mindlessly hooked into their cell phones, laptops and role-playing games, they are actually the most highly educated generation to enter the shallow netherworld of consumerism. In fact, they resent being typecast as addicted to “randomness,” a buzzword that appeared about the time many Millenials became teenagers. Something that is deemed “random” means that it has occurred unpredictably but is so moronic and boring that it warrants contempt.
When content marketing to Millenials, avoiding the randonmess trap means eliminating descriptions of actions, behaviors and slang phrases that are often attributed to GenYs, who really do not like generalizations about anything—especially themselves. Trying to connect with the Millenial consumer by stereotyping their generation as narcissistic, needy and “random” is a big mistake made by many content writers. Reading something this “random” will cause a Millenial to immediately stop reading and heave a deep sigh at the fact no one takes them seriously.
Millenials are, in fact, shrewd consumers who are free-spirited and fearless, craving knowledge of the world and of themselves. Copywriters who underestimate the intelligence, perceptiveness and potential of Millenials by placing “random”-filled content on a website will not be successful in tapping into a major source of revenue. With over 50 million Millenial consumers always online and communicating with hundreds of people every day, businesses need to start taking Millenials seriously rather than “randomly.”
Kimberly M is a freelance writer available on WriterAccess, a marketplace where clients and expert writers connect for assignments.