The “youth” can be elusive because they are always changing. Their desires, fears, and concerns are shaped according to the media they consume and their environment. Imitating old campaigns will do you no good if you want to become a brand that the current youth can trust and have an invested interest in. Since it is so hard to capture what they think and feel, how do you bridge the generation gap?
Work alongside people in your target demographic, not just in the focus group sense
Focus groups are a great way to understand how people may receive your marketing approach. However, there is always a margin of error. Your focus groups cannot cover the diversity seen on the streets. Instead of forcing your ideas to suit the taste of younger audiences, why not consider their ideas in the first place. You can use services like Student Marketing by Raptor or discuss ideas with interns to have young voices in management levels. The plans may not be in their final form but working in the opposite direction may not be so bad. They know their peers, and maybe even have a better understanding of cliques or groups with a different world view/opinion than you do. Take advantage of this perspective.
Scope out the market, understand what campaigns worked and why they worked
Even when you are working with students and people who are technically a part of your target audience, do not overlook your research. Keep your information relevant by looking at recent advertising campaigns and learn about what made them so successful. If it is something that your brand can adapt, why not?
Learning new things from your competitors is a great way to avoid approaches that have a clear-cut formula. Exciting and innovative approaches, even if it is just new to your brand, are always welcomed.
Keep it cohesive; there are many ways you can approach the youth
Do not be boxed in by stereotypical “youth” marketing. The media often manipulate how we see the world, and sometimes they can be very unforgiving to younger generations. You cannot tap into a market you do not believe in; it lacks the sincerity people seek in brands. Trends may tempt you to make marketing and advertising decisions that go against your company mission and vision. People can sense these shifts and come to their conclusions why. If the change or effort has nothing substantial backing it, your credibility will be damaged.
Be aware of the trends that are making the ways, but also keep your ear to the ground. Who knows, the trends going around may not even be present in your local scene. There are always ways to address younger audiences in a way that is relevant, interesting, and responsible. Always work in line with your mission and vision to create an image that people can trust.
By taking these three steps, you can get closer to creating an authentic effort to approach your target market. Trends can come and go, but your position should be stable.
Image: Unsplash.comUpdated Date: 07 March 2019, 14:54