Want to engage millennials? Optimise for mobile

Ross Miles - 22.03.2018

Millennials are predicted to make up around 35% of the global workforce by 2020, according to Park Communications.

From tech innovation, to trends, to buying habits, this elusive demographic is leading the way. So, how exactly can brands tap into, reach, and engage with this audience?

GlobalWebIndex’s Millennials report investigated their behaviour, looking at their device preferences and brand engagement…


Millennials might be able to remember a time before smartphones, but these devices are key to their digital lives. The overwhelming majority (97%) of internet users aged 21-34 own a smartphone, with ownership being far greater than for PC/laptop (75%) and tablets (38%).

Perhaps unsurprisingly, then, smartphones were chosen as their most important device, cited by more than two thirds (68%). In comparison, laptop and desktop PC were cited by 16% and 14%, respectively.

To conduct their online activities, millennials use an average of 2.8 devices and spend over three and a half hours online via their mobile. Despite smartphones being their go-to gadget, this demographic is actually spending more time going online via a PC/laptop/tablet, totalling 3:54. However, this could be down to using devices at work.

Brand discovery and research

Millennials spend an average of two hours and 38 minutes on social media every day, however, if you’re trying to capture the attention of these consumers in the awareness stage, you might want to look at more mainstream marketing sources.

The top channels for brand discovery were found to be search engines (37%), ads seen on TV (34%), and word-of-mouth recommendation from friends and family, and ads seen online (both at 32%). But make sure your online ads are providing consumers with high quality content. Nearly half of millennials admit to blocking ads in the last month.

When asked why they have used ad blockers, 49% said they were frustrated with how many adverts there are on the internet, while the same number said online ads were annoying or irrelevant. If brands want to reach millennials online, it is clear they should serve fewer and more relevant ads that will resonate with their target audience, instead of simply annoying them.

Social media might not be one of the most popular channels for brand discovery, but it is for product research. Search engines were again the top choice, with 49% using this channel, but social networks weren’t far behind, used by 44%, This was followed by consumer reviews (35%), product/brand sites (29%) and mobile apps (28%).

Purchase drivers

So, now you’ve got their attention, how do you convince millennials to complete their customer journey with you? The most influential factors that will persuade millennials to make a purchase are free delivery (58%), coupons and discounts (47%) and reviews (40%).

Social media is obviously a big part of their lives, but the report notes that, when it actually comes down to making a purchase, millennials are moving away from social media to e-commerce spaces to complete their transaction. The research notes that this may be due to a lack of seamless transition between pages so, if you’d like to keep your audience on your social media channel, improving this will be key.

There’s a lot of hoopla around marketing to millennials but, like any demographic, you just need to understand where, how and when they like to discover brands and make purchases in order to market to them successfully. If you’d like help effectively engaging with this audience, call Fireworx today.