Millennial Breakdown no. 3:
When It Comes to Experiences, Quality Matters
By resident millennial psychoanalyzer Sean Luster
In my last post, we learned how millennials value experiences over goods. But before you run out and buy the things you need for an in-store scavenger hunt (which sounds pretty fun, actually), it’s important to remember that not all experiences are created equal. Traveling through Europe and getting a haircut are both experiences, but are they equally satisfying? Probably not.
Speaking of traveling, you probably won’t be shocked to hear that millennials love to travel. And many of them, free of life commitments like kids, houses, and jobs, travel more than previous generations. They’re also willing to take risks to get where they want to go, and shirk luxury for a more authentic experience. As a recent Forbes article put it, they are "willing to encounter danger in pursuit of excitement"—seeking freedom to roam around new cities, try new cuisines, and talk to new people.
One industry that's been very successful in reaching millennials and engaging their travel sensibilities has been the music industry, whose efforts have focused on the uber-engaging (and lucrative) music festival circuit. Successful festivals like Coachella and the Electric Daisy Carnival have invested large sums to create increasingly unique, engaging, and shareable experiences. For brands looking to reach enthusiastic young buyers, festivals are an excellent place to start.
Of course, turning your brand into a festival is not the only way to reach these young spenders. A brick and mortar store that’s engaging, hands-on, and visible in the community can offer meaningful and memorable experiences. The important thing is to design an experience that moves the hearts and minds of millennials—then your brand will stick there, too. That scavenger hunt might be a good place to start, after all.
In my next blog post, I’m going to discuss how millennials help co-create brands. See you next time.