Win the Loyalty of the Millennials Through Packaging
Millennials are notorious for their lack of brand loyalty and hard-to-please nature. But this growing and influential group can offer a huge opportunity for business growth if you appeal to them the right way.
Move over Gen X, there’s a new kid in town, and they’re getting a lot of attention from marketers. Gen Y, aka millennials, are generally defined as people born between 1980 and 2000, although that can vary by a few years either way depending on who you ask. They are nearly 80 million strong, making them the largest consumer group since the baby boomers, and have an estimated $170 billion in purchasing power. That’s a lot of clout — and the reason why marketers are so eager to learn what drives their purchasing decisions.
Millennials are not like their predecessors; they are less likely to be swayed by traditional marketing messages. They are savvy, informed, and skeptical. They favor authenticity and honesty, and a well-known brand on the label is not enough to secure their business (and, in some cases, may do the opposite). Brands need to offer more than just a big box name to inspire a millennial’s trust and loyalty.
The millennial appeal
Creating packaging that speaks to millennials requires understanding and empathy for their beliefs, principles, and values. They are environmentally conscious, sensitive to aesthetics and design, and embrace uniqueness and individuality. They are also cost-conscious, tend to purchase packaging that reduces food and beverage waste or spoilage, and avoid over-designed or frivolous packaging.
With more and more product options for millennial consumers to consider, how can you convince them to choose your product above the others? Provide packaging that grabs their attention by being relevant to their wants and needs.
Support sustainability. Environmentally aware millennials are drawn to eco-friendly, sustainable packaging. That means using packaging that uses clean production technologies and materials that are recyclable, reusable, and biodegradable. They tend to choose shelf-stable cartons over plastic and cans because they are considered more eco-friendly and allow you to only what you need and store the rest.
Offer limited editions/personalization. Millennials take pride in their uniqueness and individualization. Savvy marketers can take advantage of this to create limited edition packaging that capitalizes on trends (zombies), events (Super Bowl), personalities (Taylor Swift), and causes (breast cancer awareness). This generation is also used to online shopping experiences that are based on their personal interests and connections, such as Amazon’s “because you like …” feature.
Show personality/creativity. Millennials want to be entertained and value creativity and “experiences” in product packaging. Marketers can add interest by using packaging that tells a story, provides humor, or surprises with hidden elements.
Give back. Although often portrayed as a “me generation,” millennials are also very socially motivated. “Giving Back” campaigns and “Pay It Forward” messages can provide a good feeling when purchasing a product, increase a brand’s authenticity, and promote trust.
Appealing to millennial consumers is a huge challenge. You need to understand their beliefs and motivations and stay current with what’s trending if you want to tap into the potential of this expanding and ever-changing population segment. Your packaging is key to showing these consumers your brand provides value, authenticity, and relevance.
[cta]It’s painless: Our package analysis is no-cost, no-obligation. Get the information and options you need to make a positive change for your product. Contact the experts at CTI online, by email, or by phone at 847-968-4855.[/cta]