The top five millennial brands are Apple, Target, Nike, Sony and Coca-Cola, per a 2016 study done by advertising agency Moosesylvania. Norty Cohen, CEO of Moosesylvania, says of how millennials come to adopt brands, “If you can create a friendship with these consumers, you really take it to the next level. They will go to great lengths to support you.” There are many facets of building brand loyalty among Generation Y, some ways involving marketing online and others by providing experiences. Research on building brand loyalty among millennials shows this group is looking to personalize their shopping experiences and want brands to connect with them on that level.
The art of taking the selfie and using smartphones for photography was captured succinctly in the release of the iPhone 6. Apple managed to push the product to millennials by displaying the uses of the smartphone for photography. The company’s “Shot on iPhone” advertising campaign managed to show examples of photos taken using the device and instructions on how users can create their own galleries with the iPhone 6. According to Apple this project was meant to be the “largest mobile photogallery in history.” Instead of using professional photographers the company compiled shots taken by 162 different users. 95 percent of the campaign’s 6.5 billion media impressions were positive. Apple once again provided an example of millennials marching to brands who personalize content by showing ways the consumer can use the product.
Target has managed to merge social media with Ecommerce to come in second place as a popular millennial brand. The company markets products via Snapchat while allowing users to decide on whether to make a purchase while content is shown on the app. Not only is the store brand being advertised, but content relative to the user is displayed. The short advertisements on social media give an example of brands managing to personalize content and giving consumers the direct choice to make decisions while browsing through social media.
Nike, one of the top 5 millennial brands, did an advertising campaign featuring top NBA star Kyrie Irving. The brand partnered with Krispy Crème to promote the athlete’s sneaker across the country. A Krispy Crème travelling truck sold the shoes in a special box. Fans were ready to participate and helped kick off the new sneakers by consuming the brand with donuts. Not only are successful brands marketed on social media but they are going to classic marketing stunts that gravitate fans toward them. Nike has an advantage by being affiliated with athletes popular among millennials who can help sell products.
Going back to social media, Sony used Snapchat to promote the release of the “Ghostbusters” remake. The company allowed Snapchatters to utilize both the front and rear ends of smartphones to interact with apparitions and slime others on the app. This uniqueness showed the brand’s awareness of social media and an ability to interact with fans in a fun way. Once again, personalizing the brand experience in a way millennials love.
Coca-Cola’s popularity was shown in the “It’s Mine” project that personalized coke bottles. The project was accompanied by the #ITSMINEsweepstakes hashtag and let customers share photos “depicting both their personal style and their exclusive Diet Coke bottle.” The project was part of the company’s “Get A Taste” marketing campaign. It serves as an example of the millennial attraction to brands which personalize content directly to them.
Millennials are prone to finding brands that appeal uniquely to the consumer. This can be done through social media or unique features found on a product. Creating brand loyalty depends mostly on becoming aware of the individual customer, whether it be by showing how to use an iPhone to create a consumer’s own galleries or pushing a brand through social media accounts like Snapchat.