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The Key to Millennials Isn’t Social Posted on Friday, October 27 in Increasing Sales.

Millennials are a driving force in the popularity of wellness as a way of life. They purchase wearable fitness devices and download apps; they live in athleisure, and they invest heavily in fitness centers and health clubs. They’re not necessarily into fitness. They simply want to eat well and live a healthy lifestyle. This passion point makes Millennials an obvious target for Sporting Good stores, and yet understanding their preferences for marketing communications can be tricky.

Millennials are notoriously difficult to market to. They exercise personal choice for how they access media and program their channels. They are savvy to marketing messages and tune it out with ease.

In addition to their own preferences, there are also preconceptions around Millennials’ media habits that may impact how Sporting Goods stores go to market. These preconceptions can lead to bad investments, wasted resources and poor results if a business is not careful. What are these preconceptions? The most popular one is:

Social media is the only way to connect with A18-34.

Marketers oftentimes assume social media is the only channel for connecting with an 18-to-34- year-old audience. To be fair, it is wildly popular: 83% of online US adults 18-34 are on Facebook. Instagram already has 41% of Millennial internet users on site (and growing) and boasts the highest concentration of Millennials (accounting for more than 60% of users). With this density of engaged users, social media is an attractive opportunity for Sporting Good stores to connect with Millennials, but social media is not the preferred communication channel for retailers for Millennials.

Overwhelmingly – and ironically – their preference is for email communication. 82% of Millennials cite email as the most preferred channel for interaction with retailers. The preference for email communications is slightly more notable for males with 76% of M18-34 compared to 73% of F18- 34 who claim to open and read promotional emails from retailers. And when compared to the larger email-reading population, Millennials are 86% more likely to read on a smartphone (which means emails should be built in a responsive format). For Sporting Good retailers, email is very much a necessary platform in concert with a larger integrated strategy.

Millennials are bucking conventional wisdom and making marketers adhere to their terms. We are tapped into their media habits and preferences, and we have the tools to uncover additional insights and the integrated marketing expertise to help you understand how to leverage them. To learn how we can make this work for your business, contact us today by clicking here or calling 334.262.1611.

Borison, Rebecca. “Health And Fitness Apps Are Exploding In Popularity — Here's Who Is Using Them” Business Insider 19 Jun 2014
“Millennial Research Study 2015” Principal Financial Group 10 Mar 2015
“Millennials in Adulthood: Detached from Institutions, Networked with Friends” Social Trends Pew Research Center 7 Mar 2014
“The Acumen Report: Constant Content” Defy Media 3 Mar 2015
eMarketer, Feb 2015
Garcia, Krista. “Retail Email Marketing: Benchmarks and Trends in the US” eMarketer 24 Sep 2015 

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