Contrary to popular belief, Millennials are brand loyal consumers. According to a recent study by Adriot Digital, 64% claim they’re just as loyal, if not more loyal, than their parents. Many seasoned marketers seem to have forgotten what it’s like to be a “young adult”. For the first time, you’re in the driver seat. You get to decide what you do, when you do it, and how you do it.
18 to 30 year old consumers are highly experimental; they’re willing to try new things, including new brands. You’re going to see a lot of variability in brand consideration and preference amongst this segment; but don’t be mistaken, they are building brand loyalties.
These youth consumers are not only solidifying preference for brands they currently need; but also, brands they aspire to have. Why do you see Mercedes sponsoring business council events or case competitions? Not because university students are going to spend $100K on their next vehicle. It’s because when they have the disposable income, Mercedes will have already won them over.
As another example, why are Financial Institutions competing to drive their “no-fee student account” portfolio? Because they know that the bank which you have in university or college is very likely the same bank which you will use for the rest of your life for personal banking accounts, investment accounts, mortgages, lines of credit, RRSP’s, etc.
We are seeing an influx of major brands across a variety of industries, like Costco or Hugo Boss, looking to make a big play for the millennial segment. They’re coming to the realization that if they don’t act now to create a strong point of market entry strategy, they too will be stuck with the demographic time bomb issue; an aging install base with little relevance to youth consumers who represent the future.