You might believe that the only way to engage with millennial consumers is to go digital, but there are plenty of ways you can get their attention offline too! Here, we have three handy ways to engage with millennials through offline marketing:
1. Use your branding wherever you can
Establishing strong branding is an essential part of any business and it can also be a great way to engage with any generation in an offline capacity. The centre of your branding will of course be your logo, so you should think carefully about the colours, fonts and symbols you use. To talk about colour first, the colour scheme you use can have various implications. Some well-known examples include:
Green, which is generally seen to represent innovation and new beginnings
Orange and yellow, both bright happy colours associated with fun and energy
Blue, which represents stability and trustworthiness and can be a fun pastel tone if used in a lighter shade
Black, which is obviously as dark and serious as you can get
You should also be careful about the fonts you use – whilst serif fonts (aka fonts with flicky bits), are seen as more traditional and therefore more serious, sans serif fonts (aka fonts without flicky bits) are often perceived to be more modern and fun! At the end of the day, it all depends on what your options are and what works best for your business. Be sure to look through all of your options, carefully comparing each choice, especially as the logo is one of the most important parts of your marketing.
Make sure you use your branding across any signage too, whether its the sign outside your shop or school signage and once you’ve designed your logo, how do you get your message out? There are plenty of ways, including billboards and even branded merchandise! This is a point where focus groups may come in handy, as they’ll allow you to ask your target market directly what they would engage with – but more on that later…
Collaborating with other businesses is a great way to cross promote! Research brands that your target market may be interested in and look into ways to contact them. Much like the previous forms of advertisement, there are plenty of ways you can actually collaborate with other businesses once you’re in touch with them, including:
Cross promotion with advertisements, particularly in print media: Create joint advertisements with the businesses you connect to – utilise our next subject, print media! Think carefully about what connects your two companies and make sure you really show that connection, whilst celebrating the best of both businesses.
Co-branding: Co-branding is probably a lesser known form of advertising, but it can be highly effective if it’s done correctly. Essentially, whilst following this technique you’ll be putting your best creative heads together to come up with a brand new product that shows off the best that both of you have to offer.
Competitions: Competitions and giveaways are always a great promotional technique even if you’re doing it solo. Two companies running a joint competition has the potential to get even more engagement, as you’ll have an even bigger audience of potential participants.
Discounts/special offers: Collaboration with other companies can also allow you to do special deals or promotions related to each other’s products, depending on what your businesses are of course. Why not do a two for one or buy one get one free deal? Much like the competition we mentioned previously, it would be a great way to grow both your audiences, whilst also sharing each other’s customers.
3. Print media
Some say that print media is a dying form and that the only way to communicate with the younger generation is to go to the likes of Twitter or Facebook. But if you’re looking for an offline way to connect with millennials, why not get in touch with popular magazines or even newspapers? A simple advert is of course the classic way to go, but you don’t necessarily have to go down that road.
If you’re looking for a more dynamic idea, you could always work with the publications to write some kind of article that subtly advertises your business whilst not being as direct.
Much like with the sponsorships mentioned previously, you should carefully research which publications your target market actually reads, so you can get your message out to the right people!
Publications won’t advertise your product for free and most likely won’t give you publicity through an article for free either, but the audience build up it will give you will defiantly be worth the cost
4. Focus groups and surveys
If you want to know how best to engage millennials, or any target market for that matter, the best thing you can do is ask them yourself! Overall, the two best ways to do this are either using an online service like Survey Monkey or doing an in person focus groups. And as our focus today is specifically offline, it’s focus groups we’re going to be talking about!
First of all, it’s important to think carefully about the questions you’re planning on asking: are you covering every possible angle? Then, make sure the people you’ve invited are actually within your target market. Whilst the focus group session is happening, be sure to record it so you can listen back and transcribe it later. That way, you’ll get every single detail down in a document and will therefore really be able to make the most of the opportunity.
So in conclusion, in spite of the common stereotypes associated with their generation, there are plenty of ways to collaborate with millennials offline. One of the most prominent examples is focus groups and surveys, which will allow you to understand what younger generations want to a greater extent. There’s also print media, where you could advertise or collaborate for a feature – and speaking of collaboration, working with other businesses can also be a great way to cross promote both your products, through competitions or even teaming up to launch a new product. Finally, it’s most important to use your branding wherever you can, to establish continuity.