Whitney Ryan, AIM’s Millennial Prime MOVER, and I will be speaking at the International Home and Housewares Show in Chicago on Monday March 4th at 10:30 am in the Innovation Theater. Our topic is “10 NEW Rules for Selling to Millennials in Today’s Economy.”
Rule #1 is KNOW them. They’re not all alike – Sara, who works for a private equity firm in New York, is different from Jake, who works for a software startup in Northern California. And then there’s Mel, who is a cowboy/hipster from Austin, and Jessica, who is doing freelance writing and living with her parents in Chicago.
And they’re not all squeaky-clean college types who grew up in the American suburbs. Millennials might live in a poor US neighborhood or in poverty on the other side of the world. Millennials are a growing, global consumer force.
Ageism – prejudice about age – is like racism and it’s not just about older people. We tend to fear and often make incorrect assumptions about young people out of ignorance. Non-Millennials are sometimes threatened by young people.
Our advice is to LEARN about them by getting inside their heads. Do your homework. Understanding Millennials will help you sell to everyone else in our connected world. Read everything you can about them. Engage AIM or read our studies. (We have a new webzine that is will be published soon.)
Connect with young adults. TALK to them. Hire them and make them an integral part of your business. Create advisory boards. Develop consumer panels. (AIM’s Millennial MOVERS panel not only helps our clients, but it helps us as a company understand the Millennial mindset both here in the US and across the globe.)
MOST important – LISTEN to them. And they won’t share with you until they believe you are listening. Read your online reviews. Read all the feedback about your products and programs. “Listen in” on your customer service chat frequently.
Come see us in Chicago or contact us for more information and to learn about the other nine rules. Remember if you can make the sale to Millennials, you might just reach their Boomer parents and their GenX co-workers as well!