How to Use Content to Engage Millennials – According to a Millennial

content to engage millennialsCowritten by Hellen McAdams, Guest Blogger

The world is constantly changing. And we’re not talking about small, esthetic changes here. We mean tidal waves, the kind that cause tectonic movements inside what was previously known as a consumer world kind of change. Millennials are a driving force of this ongoing change. That’s why it’s crucial for marketing companies to know how to engage with them. And that starts with their message. Do you know how to create content to engage millennials?

The Future of Marketing

It doesn’t matter if you head a multinational company with history dating back decades or just came up with a brilliant idea yesterday. If you don’t know how to approach and engage millennials, you’re pretty much doomed. Look at it this way: They already control more than $1 trillion in direct buying power. That’s way more than small potatoes.

If you’ve been living under a rock and aren’t sure who millennials are, here’s a brief overview.

  • They were born between 1977 and 2000
  • Millennials account for 25% of the US population
  • 53% of millennial households have children, and 1 in 4 are parents
  • Nearly half of millennials are willing to spend money with a company that supports a cause—even if it means spending a bit more
  • Millennials are 2.5 times more likely to be early adopters of new technology, and 56% are among the very first to try the newest thing
  • They are content creators with 46% posting original content or videos online
  • 80% want brands to entertain them
  • 40% want to participate in co-creation of products and brands
  • 70% are inclined to share feedback with companies about their purchases

Developing Content to Engage Millennials

If your target market includes this coveted demographic, you need a strategy. Here are some things that you should always keep in mind when looking to engage millennials:

  • An easy-to-navigate website with great web design that quickly shares who you are, the value you provide, an how to contact you.
  • An ordinary millennial has a very short attention span. If your surveys last little longer than couple of minutes, they will move on. Keep content to engage millennials simple and concise.
  • When it comes to marketing, they prefer to be engaged rather than sold. Pop-up ads and interruption marketing are just annoying to them. Provide opportunities for them to participate.
  • Millennials like cool stuff. Even if you are presenting a dishwasher to them, be innovative and focus on the benefits (the cool ones!). The more interactive and rewarding, the better.

More Ways to Differentiate Your Brand

Remember that gaining millennials’ attention is one thing; keeping it is another. To keep them interested, you have to incorporate them into the conversation.

Millennials like working in teams. They are much more socialized and connected to each other than any generation before them. After all, millennials developed the idea of social networking—and they’re going to use it. If you want to create content to engage millennials, you have to be on social platforms. Consider LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat.

What’s Good for the Goose…

If you’re reading through this and thinking, “Hey, these tactics would be good practice for any brand, not just those targeting millennials,” congratulations! You’re a keen marketer!

Passive marketing campaigns don’t work anymore. You have to be smart and always aim to engage your audience in a way that is interesting and makes them want to participate.

One example of great interactive marketing happened at last year’s Grammy Awards. Users got access to exclusive content as a reward for following the Grammy Snapchat channel. The fact that they saw more than if they were following a regular TV broadcast kept millennials engaged and interested.

What can you do to engage, educate, and entertain your audience? Chances are good that any efforts you take to be more interactive will help you reach millennials and elevate your content marketing.

Hellen McAdams is the chief strategist at She loves a good digital marketing strategy and isn’t afraid to ask questions every day to keep up with the industry’s trends. If you have any comments or questions, tweet her at @hellen_mcadams.