Millennials and Gen Z consumers are a dominant force in the marketplace, but their loyalty is fickle, fragile, and sophisticated. If you want to keep them loyal, engaged, and buying from you, you need a strategy to earn it. What’s yours?
Millennials and Gen Z are now the largest and most influential groups of consumers. What wins their loyalty? What print and digital marketing strategies are more likely to retain them? To find out, Alliance Data’s Analytics & Insights conducted a research study titled “NextGen Loyalty.” It found that while these groups differ in many respects, they have commonalities when it comes to brand loyalty:
- They can shop for any brand, anywhere, at any time. To get their loyalty, brands have to earn it.
- The loyalty of these shoppers is fickle. Because they have so many choices, purchase decisions often depend on how they are feeling at that moment.
- The loyalty of these shoppers is fragile. 63% of Young Millennials aged 21-28, 54% of Older Millennials aged 29-36, and 52% of Gen Zs aged 8-20 will seek an alternative when the product they wanted isn’t available. Marketers have to work at maintaining their loyalty all the time.
How can you respond?
1. Personalize, personalize, personalize! Younger consumers expect brands to cater to their preferences and needs. Know your audience. Ditch the generic communications and embrace genuinely personalized messaging.
2. Keep the coupons coming. 71% of Millennials and 56% of Gen Z seek out discounts or coupons before making a purchase. Millennials, in particular, love discounts, so get printed coupons into their hands.
3. Use in-store triggers like mobile discounts and couponing. Because these shoppers’ loyalty is fickle, mobile coupons and other in-store triggers can make the difference between them making a purchase or moving on.
4. Be everywhere. Stay in touch on a regular basis. Use multiple channels—direct mail, email, online, mobile—while maintaining an integrated brand strategy.
5. Market to the influencers, too, particularly on social media. More than two-thirds of buyers consume some form of social content before engaging with a salesperson, and 34% of Gen Z shoppers, specifically, say they listen to bloggers or YouTubers before making a purchase. Know your audience’s influencers and include them in your messaging.
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