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What Every B2B Marketer Needs to Know About Millennials

August 23, 2012  
The Millennials have arrived! The first wave of the Millennial generation (born between 1980 and 2000) is now entering decision-making positions at companies across the land. And in a post at Godfrey's B2B Insights blog, Ken Jones asks, "Are you ready to communicate with them?"

There's one big reason why you need to examine your answer to that question: Millennials are as hefty a group as the Baby Boomers—and as sure to have a major influence on American business.

So, get your notepad ready. Here are three key Millennial traits every B2B marketer needs to understand, with suggestions for communicating with these unique decision-makers.

Millennials are:

Technologically savvy and equipped. Millennials grew up with technology, and have no inhibitions about using it, Jones reminds us. So please make sure each and every online communication you develop for them can impress on any conceivable device in any conceivable situation.

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  • by Kevin Hosey Thu Aug 23, 2012 via web

    Interesting. I'm a Baby Boomer and those exact same traits describe me, as well.

  • by Vince Fri Aug 24, 2012 via web

    ^ Kevin, I'm a Gen-X'er but I was about to post the same comment. Here's a quick article that supports the premise that age based segmentation is perhaps overrated, at least in the context of interactive media:

  • by Jenna Fri Aug 24, 2012 via web

    I was born in 1983, at the beginning of the millenial generation, and I've been selling to us, as well as the other generations for a couple of years now.

    What I find to be the big difference is that since we're still younger, we don't trust professionalism as much as we do another flawed human being. Before I worked in sales, very professional, well organized people kind of put me on edge. But someone who was well put-together but gave had a casual 'vibe" to them would get through my defenses in seconds.

    Another thing is that we grew up on the internet. I was building web pages before I could drive, and that *really* wasn't even anything special. Many of us have extensive twitter, facebook and linkedin networks...and the stakes have never been higher. Before, you might expect someone to complain about a bad experience to 5, 10, 20 people maybe? Now, I can complain to 5000+ at once in seconds. At the same time though, a good experience can bring new business from all over!

    Age-based segmentation is only dead for people who play the numbers. When it comes to personal interaction, I think it's as important as ever for making that personal connection that will make your sale. Just like if I was like "Sup grandpa, what kinda stereo you lookin' for?" to an older man, not realizing that we have our own concept of generational identity and working with that will make you come off like a parent.

    ...and that's one thing that crosses the generation gap. Not many value the advice of their parent over that of a peer.

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