Millennial marketing: you’re doing it wrong
With each new generation comes a fresh outlook on society, unique goals and expectations, and a whole new set of challenges to go along with them. If ever there was a generation destined to question (and complain about) the status quo, it would be millennials.
So how do you effectively communicate with a generation characterized by confidence, entitlement, tolerance, and narcissism? We’ve broken down NRC’s most recent consumer research to understand how millennials listen to, search for, and engage with health(care) today.
Healthcare vs. Health
DON’T: Expect millennials to be familiar with or interested in traditional hospital messaging. They are two times less likely to be able to name a local hospital and 40 percent of them have not had an overnight stay since birth. Add to that the fact that they are much more likely to defer necessary care and the message is clear: traditional hospital and healthcare marketing doesn’t resonate.
Pivot your efforts towards health, which in the mind of a millennial means physical activity and smart nutrition choices. They love to think about exercise as entertainment and they see themselves as personally responsible for their health, so why not sponsor a local “fun” run or deliver healthy, affordable recipes online?
We Are #1
DON’T: Blow your entire advertising budget on licenses for the Top Hospital/System/Speciality/Etc./Etc. awards. At last count, there are approximately 376 Top 100 Hospitals and millennials are information-savvy enough to tune out repetitive messaging. Self-promotion for the sake of self-promotion is one of the biggest no-nos when it comes to millennial marketing.
DO: Clearly communicate how your services impact ME, your potential millennial patient. Millennials crave personal brand relationships and if you’re able to deliver, they will reward you with their loyalty (20 percent label themselves “extremely loyal” vs. 17 percent in all other age groups).
Social Media = Facebook
DON’T: Think that a strong Facebook presence means you’re connecting with millennials on social media. Yes, Facebook is still the most-used social media platform, but that statistic is on the decline. YouTube, Instagram, and Twitter are all cited as significant sources of healthcare information by millennials.
DO: Develop a complementary, multi-platform social media strategy that incorporates video and other interactive elements (health risk assessment anybody?). Make sure to create content appropriate for each platform and tie everything back to your health-based brand.
Babies Lead to Lifetime Loyalty
DON’T: Bank on the desire to get married and start a family as the primary gateway to engagement with your hospital/system. In a recent Pew study, half of millennials said that they do not plan to have children at all. This generation is significantly more educated, more career-focused, and far less likely to respond to family-centered messaging.
DO: Find innovate ways to connect with millennials who put career ahead of family. Partner with employers in your area to provide digital care solutions and relevant content
Everyone Has a Doctor
DON’T: Make that assumption. Almost 40 percent of millennials do not have a PCP. Enough said.
DO: Understand how millennials look for care and what information most influences their decision-making process. When a problem is outside the scope of Urgent Care, the number one thing they’re looking for in a potential PCP is a strong reputation. Millennials expect Amazonian transparency—if you’re not posting your doc’s ratings and reviews from past patients, they’ll find an organization that is.
To hear the full story and learn about “milloyees” (millennials in the workplace), check out NRC’s webinar, Millennial Madness.
And, if you’re more interested in seeing data on millennials in your market, submit a request to our consumer research team.