Generational gaps can create challenges for businesses, forcing businesses to adapt to the expectations imposed by younger generations. Currently, millennials make up 24% of the global population and are actively changing the ways in which businesses must operate. Like the generations before them, millennials have established their own work ethics and preferred methods of communication.
To bridge generational divides, businesses need acknowledge and address the expectations of millennials. This requires effective communication; companies must ensure that this audience has access to informative resources about the business, as well as its products and services. Understanding a millennial’s core values and characteristics will help to position businesses as a desirable entity to this key demographic.
Millennials expect to be well informed about companies before making employment or purchasing decisions. To provide sought-after information to this demographic, companies need to make sure that they are implementing a dynamic online strategy.
The following article addresses some of the major considerations you should be taking when optimizing your online strategy for millennials.
How Millennial and Baby Boomer Motivations Differ
Millennials, also known as Generation Y, lead on-the-go lifestyles and have specific expectations of how companies should conduct business. According to a recent report, 81% of millennials appreciate the ability to stay connected online, anywhere and at any time. Connectivity gives this group a sense of control, while conveniently accessing the information they desire.
Unlike the baby boomer generation, millennials possess a fairly laid-back temperament and a go-with-the-flow type of mentality. Working odd business hours, showing up in a t-shirt and jeans, or sending a text to facilitate communication is not uncommon amongst millennials. However, preceding generations tend to conduct business in a more structured manner which can form disagreements within a company’s workforce.
The Millennial Generation also expects access to information about a company, its practices/processes, and details regarding its products/services. 80% of millennials are interested in the ‘behind-the-scenes’ story; this group determines whether a company is worth of their business if the organization’s products serve both the consumer and their community.
Related Blog: How to Get the Most Value from Your Millennial Employees
What Can Businesses Do to Communicate with Millennials More Effectively?
Companies that want to sell products to and/or recruit millennial talent must develop and maintain a strong online presence. This ensures that youth consumers and professionals can connect and learn about the business whenever, wherever, and by whomever in the organization is making purchase decisions.
To effectively communicate with millennials, there are 3 platforms that you must consider updating. This includes:
Company Website & Web Content
Millennials are incredibly active online and have a greater desire to do extensive Internet-based research than their Baby Boomer counterparts. Give them what they desire; create targeted web content such as blogs, web downloads, and video content that cater to their needs. Be accessible!
Ensuring your business has an informative, intuitive website will help attract millennial audiences. There are currently over 30,000 online consumers that could possibly be searching for your company! Consider developing a more intuitive site navigation, adding additional types of content, and understanding how design elements such as white space can help convey a better overall experience for millennials.
Optimizing Social Media Presence
Millennials use social media channels as a source of information about brands and topics they’re interested in. As a business, it’s essential to establish a presence on these networks and provide timely, consistent messaging to this audience.
The following data suggests which social channels were favoured most throughout 2016:
Picture Source: The Social Times (http://www.adweek.com/socialtimes/survey-41-of-millennials-use-facebook-every-day-infographic/643936)
Implementing a social media strategy can allow a business to start meaningful conversations, anywhere and at any time. Use it to your advantage by communicating in a non-invasive way. Provide value and help your millennial audience feel more engaged with the brand.
Millennials are consistently on-the-go; is your business? Satisfying younger generations means that a company must ensure that its audiences can gain access to company information at any time and on any device. This includes your website; make sure its mobile-friendly to reduce inconsistencies when viewed across several devices.
In a recent survey, 24% of millennials indicated that “nearly all” of their time spent online takes place on a smartphone. That means that businesses need to format all of their online content to ensure mobile users can stay connected at all times.
Canadian Government Grants to Enhance Your Business
To attract millennial talent and consumers, companies must take the necessary steps to inform interested parties about the business and how it operates.
Although this requires additional investment, Canadian government grants help businesses offset a variety of expenses related to optimization for Millennials:
Webpage Redesign Grants for Attracting Millennials
The IRAP Accelerated Review Process (ARP) program supports technical research and development projects, such as the development of a sophisticated and interactive website. IRAP grants can be used to reduce labour expenses and accelerate the project, helping to launch the website faster.
Eligible applicants may receive up to 80% of direct labour costs and up to 50% of third-party labour expenses, to a maximum of $50,000 in research grants.
Hiring Grants for Recruiting Millennial Employees
Ready to hire millennials to work for your organization? A popular way for employers to expand their workforce while reducing payroll costs is by accessing hiring grants. Businesses that are looking to hire recent post-secondary graduates can access government funding to offset onboarding costs and subsidize an employee’s wages.
The majority of hiring programs will cover up to 50% of a recent post-secondary graduate’s wages to a maximum $14,000-$20,000.
Training Grants to Make Your Workforce Millennial-Friendly
When integrating millennials into the business, employers should consider providing training to the company’s existing staff to properly understand and respond to millennial presence. Likewise, these training grants can be used to train your millennial employees to provide them with an expanded skillset.
The Canada Job Grant may provide applicants with up to 66% to offset third-party training costs to a maximum of $10,000 per trainee.
Integrate Millennial Talent into Your Company’s Workforce
Millennials possess first-hand knowledge and a desire to gain practical work experience. Despite this, businesses still find it challenging to find and recruit talented youth workers.
Ontario-based businesses can access a free guide on Recruiting Top Talent to reduce this difficulty. Discover some of the best resources to connect with recent graduates, including a comparison of job boards and other resources to get started.