Member associations are experiencing a generational shift, as millennials (AKA Gen Y) increasingly make up the majority of an association cohort. This means that, as marketers, we need to focus on content in a way that really speaks to this generation, who really are no longer the fresh new kids on the block.
Millennials came of age during a time of rapid and impactful technological change. They barely remember a life before mobile technology and their relationships with family, friends – and, yes, brands – now play out on social media.
The latest Sensis Social Media Report indicates that 99% of Australians aged 18-29 are subscribed to social networks, as are 96% of Australians aged 30-39. So social listening is a pretty helpful place to start gathering information about what exactly keeps a Gen Y-ers interested: the topics they discuss; the content they like to engage with; and the demands they have when it comes to gathering information. These principles can then help shape your own content strategies to keep your members informed, inspired and engaged.
A VISUAL GENERATION
Visual content should be part and parcel of any content marketing strategy, purely because it helps audiences better retain messaging. When it comes to determining the type of visual content preferred by millennials, it’s important to consider the rise of streaming services such as Netflix, and the fact that millennials are the biggest users of platforms such as YouTube and IGTV.
In short, video is where it’s at. Luckily, though, you don’t necessarily need to aspire to Netflix-style production values to make an impression. Authenticity is the key – so it’s completely OK to be ‘lo-fi’.
QUALITY OVER QUANTITY
While Millennials are aware of the need for advertorial content, they actively seek quality over quantity. A few well-researched and executed pieces of content that are clear and considered will go much further than several pieces of content produced for content’s sake.
To best determine how frequently you should create and share content, track engagement rates over a few months. Test which days you’re more likely to see higher open rates on newsletters, or see what times your social content is most engaged with.
GET TO THE POINT
Millennials are sure of what they want and what they care about. Content that can be accessed quickly and gets to the point in an incisive way is a winner. Research keywords around topics you’d like to address in your content, and then combine snack-size insights with visually appealing stimuli that is responsive across both mobile and desktop devices.
Time and again Millennials have been dubbed a ‘self-absorbed’ generation, when the reality is that Gen Y places a great deal of value in true connection. An Adobe survey conducted earlier this year revealed that 34% of consumers are more likely to make an unplanned purchase if a brand personalises its content.
That figure is likely to be higher for existing members of associations, as names and basic details should already be known by associations providing products and services. Small ‘human’ touches to content can mean far greater return in terms of member loyalty, if those members feel that the association that they are a part of truly knows who they are.