FRIDAY, JANUARY 20, 2017
1. Millennial: a person reaching young adulthood and born in the 1980s or 1990s-usually plural; Webster Dictionary Definition
2. Millennial: a person born from the years 1982 and 2004. Millennials are generally considered to be self-absorbed and spoiled, and even if the spoiling is not their fault, they still get blamed for being shallow. A Special Snowflake. Urban Dictionary
I’m a millennial. I know, I know…I’m the problem, right? We do things a little differently, we don’t think quite like the generations before us did, and we love staring at our phones. 2017 is being called the year of the millennial. It’s the first year that we will outspend baby boomers by nearly $8 billion. We’re a prime target, but the problem is the marketing world still views our generation as the 17-year-old kid, and boy did they missed a huge opportunity. It’s common knowledge that the sales world is up in arms about how to get on this band wagon–without much success, I might add. If you Google "how to sell to a millennial" and you’ll end up with everything from training seminars to article after article trying to figure us out.
Here’s a few tips from one that might help:
Get With The Times - My husband said it best in a discussion we had about how we might parent one day. My argument at the time was the desired effect for an anti-dependency on technology. After a few jokes at my expense that doomsday prepping was in my future he stated that “to not have access to technology is to handicap the next generation and I won’t handicap our kids.” It hit home. You can run, you can hide, but you can’t escape technology.
With my desire for my children to grow up not depending on Alexa to answer their questions, I had to acknowledge that I rely on her (it?) to wake me up every single morning. I use it in my job. I use it in my relationship and in all other correlating areas of my life. I can honestly say I am better and more productive for it. Technology is a benefit and millennials use it to find everything from their insurance to the best brunch places.
I Came For the Experience - In my world of the independent insurance agency I’ve heard the same selling points since I jumped on board, “Good service, cheap price, great markets.” This could apply to any restaurant, retail store, or contractor, but this is the same selling point for every business. In regards to the insurance industry, quite a few of us have 30 markets to look at, if you win by price you’ll lose by price, and no market has ever survived let alone marketed that their service is anything less than good. Ryan Hanley said it best, “If you prioritize customer service over customer experience then you’re already a commodity” If you’ve ever seen the elusive millennial hipster then you’ll know they’d rather die than be a commodity or shop at The Gap.
We went to dinner at a restaurant in Austin that absolutely gave the experience. We were greeted by name, the waiter was beyond wonderful, and anytime we had to excuse ourselves a server would be there to pull back the chair and refold out napkins without prompting. It’s amazing how many interactions are just subpar. It can be as simple as sending a thank you note that can take that experience to the next level. People just want to know you care. Millennials have been told they are special their whole life so we want to feel special. Giving the experience answers not the basic human need to be noticed and cared for, but also may help feed the ego of our generation.
Make It Easy - Technology has made so many everyday things so much simpler. I know the answer to any of life’s questions with a click of a button. Everything is so easy that when something is extremely difficult it’s almost annoying.
For example, today I wanted to export a PDF to a word document. A quick google search gave me some platforms that I could do just this. The first one I clicked wanted me to enter my information and sign away my first born. So I moved onto the second link and was able to get the results I wanted in under a minute. This is a petty example, but how many customers do you lose just because something could be a little easier? This was the case for insurance agencies 5 years ago. We live in a microwave society where a lot of solutions can be reached immediately, which has changed expectations, especially within the business community. We’ve been taught that we don’t have to wait 24 hours for the answer, when they can go somewhere else and have it now.
There are a lot of stigmas going around about the incoming generation. Stereotypes have been set. This is not the first time this has happened and this is not the last time it will happen. The key is to learn and grow. No matter if you’re a 20-something starting out or a 60-something on the brink of retirement, we can always learn new tricks.
If you have questions regarding your insurance, ECI is always here.
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