Marketing & Millennials
Do you ever wonder why there are ads on "cotton" but not a specific brand of clothing? Do you wonder which brand of milk or dairy farm are sponsoring the "Got Milk" ads? What about recent campaigns encouraging millennials to go out and buy diamonds, but not any specific store or producer's name is on the commercial. They aren't prompting you to order from a De Beers distributor or a Kay Jeweler.. to buy Horizon brand milk or wear the new spring collection of cotton T-shirts available at Target.
Millennials are targeted in many new advertising schemes. Why? Well as Forbes puts it, millennials don't respond to current advertising. The indigo children, crystal children, Gen X, Starseeds, today's youth.. whatever you call them. People recognize they're different and advertisers are no exception.
We came here with new ideas, almost wired to lead in a new direction. We share different visions with a common undercurrent of connectedness and quality. We are not understood by those who operate in the old paradigm. Stats show that millennials voting stats were, as the Washington Post puts it, "doomed to failure...over time, people have become much less likely to vote in local elections. But they’ve continued to be involved – sometimes more so — as civic volunteers, by contacting politicians, and in other ways." Though not voting was seen as the "one finger salute", and yes in many ways it was, millennials are working in other ways to bring about the changes they want to see. Other generations may not see it, but the white house isn't where things will begin to change and putting our energy there is somewhat of a dead end; a vortex of endless energy "vampires" who drain us by seeking emotional reactions and portraying an image or side for us to be for or to oppose.
Our children are the future, and that's why we are also changing the way the school systems are able to operate. As the CPCC puts it: "The millennials have different characteristics than any generation before them and in order to serve them better, K-12 education and colleges and universities are having to change the way they do business...(they) expect to have 6-8 careers in their lifetime and are attracted to diverse environments. The millennial student has been a different animal for their teachers. K-12 institutions, colleges, universities and now the work force are wondering how to motivate and meet the expectations of this generation."
The millennials aren't stopping there with education system. They're calling forth new methods of schooling for their children. Waldorf, more hands on centered schools, charter schools, home schooling, unschooling and other more personalized approaches to learning.
Millennials are all about leaving behind the cookie-cutter and chasing authenticity; something they feel the world has lacked for a very long time. Impersonal ads with logos and catchy slogans are out. Deep and meaningful causes that provide informative content that they can use are in.
Meaghan Moraes put it well in her blog: "Millennials want to feel like your content was created with their interest (not their wallet) in mind...People appreciate honesty, and brands with transparent campaigns win...This successfully speaks to Millennials because it screams “Live!” instead of “Buy!” – and that’s something that’ll stick with them. Most young people would rather have an unforgettable experience than seek out luxury, and Hostelworld gets that."
Millennials want to be involved, have an experience, and having a voice in the direction a company or service is going. They crave being heard. That's why consuming "things" just isn't doing it for us the way it did for those who came before us.
It isn't about protesting things or being part of a cause- it's about making real change in the way things are done that honors who we are. Shaking up the old system is why every generation lands here- so that we as a society can propel forward- so that we can evolve.
Millennials are wearing crystals and gemstones to raise their vibration- not sporting diamonds to be fancy with their neighbors and other strangers, or to live up to that "everyone else" standard of living. (Yuck!) Millennials are buying things at second hand stores, trading clothes with their friends, or seeking organic or naturally made clothing. Yes in part because it is "trendy", but why? There is something embedded in our souls screaming that we can't go on like this. That buying blood diamonds carried into the market place by pawns in a large game is doing ourselves and this earth no favors, that supporting pain with our dollar is no longer acceptable. That we have enough clothes circling around on this earth and buying from companies who operate mass sweatshops just don't deserve our financial "okay, that's all good".
Marriage rates, too, have dropped dramatically, with a little more than 1/4 of people age 18- to 35 married as of 2012, Over half of the country is single. Is this considered rebellious? Why? News Day says "We millennials have set aside the ideals of an "ownership society" in favor of the hippy-dippy values of a "sharing economy." We rent, borrow or share our textbooks, cars and even dinner leftovers, so why would we bother buying a home or permanently attaching ourselves to a single romantic partner?"
But I think it's much deeper. I think that beyond a love for bucking the system, today's youth is taking time to do something very strange for our current society: taking time for getting to know ourselves. Exploring our strengths, our weaknesses, how our wounds affect the lenses through which we see this world. Taking time to heal in order to be our best versions in this world. And sure, if one chooses, to share with a teammate or partner in this world.
Millennials scare people because we ask questions. Like why are we marketing toxins to children? Why are we injecting babies with 32 rounds of some of the most toxic chemicals available on our earth by the time they're school aged, but our world leaders are opting their children out? Why are banning herbs illegal and pharmaceutical cocktails being marketed over Tell-lie-vision and marked up over 500,000%? Why would we go into tens of thousands of dollars of debt for a piece of paper that no longer guarantees us a job? Why are elections and choices so often ignoring main issues we all struggle with, while leaving us to choose "the lesser of two evils" which are often best friends, behind closed doors and funded by the same entities who pull their strings? Why, according to the data, are doctors 41 times more deadly than gun owners? Why is the government subsidizing crops that are the backbone to obesity and linked with disease, instead of natural fruits and vegetables? Why is the company responsible for chemical weapons that poisoned our "enemies" crops, the main supplier of seeds encapsulating those very poisons in their DNA? Why is a poison company managing our food, yet banning it in their own cafeterias? Why is the main chemical we use to "clean" our water known for closing off the main known gland that connects us with our spirituality? Why in "minority" (millennials see the irony in this word" communities are there more prisons than schools? Why are we brushing our teeth with poison?
And following all of these important questions, I'm prompted to think more about the original questions I began to ask myself.. What is the meaning of these seemingly anonymous commercials promoting things millennials have all but abandoned. Dairy and Diamonds. Money, of course. When I found out Nixon was paid millions of dollars to bring dairy onto the food pyramid I wasn't surprised in the least.. but I did think wow, if they paid that much, how much of a return did they expect to see on that investment? Hate to say it my friends, but your health is not a concern of any industry, including (maybe especially) government. It's is more important than ever that we continue to take our health into our own hands and be empowered in our choices. Voting with our dollar is the most brilliant way to be heard.
You don't need a stollen diamond to be "real", and you don't need a glass of milk to get calcium. Calcium is a mineral. It comes from the ground. How do you think cows get it? They don't drink kitty milk or human milk.. Drink milk if you like milk, but eat your leafy greens too. The open minded approach opts to choose a farmer who is local or one who's practices and methods you agree with. Experiment with making your own nut or seed milk, or see if it's something else you're really craving, like that mother energy or the comfort dairy brings. Wear cotton if you like the feel of it, but the millennial attitude is to reuse, thrift & sage, choose organic or fair trade.. See how you feel supporting a cleaner approach for yourself and your planet.
Listening to your body is simple and effective, but like any other muscle, the intuition must be exercised. Try listening to your gut in little ways at first. Maybe that's experimenting with your water quality or the people you surround yourself exchanging energy with. Find what works for you in a way that honors and respects those around you and provides balance. Most of all, honor your true nature and you will ultimately be heard.