Marketing to Millennials: Big Data’s Impact on the Retail Space

Millennials can hold the key to the future of any consumer-driven business, with this generation having $1.3 trillion worth of spending power per annum, according to the Boston Consulting Group. Millennials are also the most diverse and digitally-connected group of individuals the world has ever seen, which means your retail company is likely collecting plenty of data from your websites, mobile apps, and social media platforms to use to your advantage.

Marketing to millennials using Big Data” is more than just a nice catchphrase for executives to use in strategic meetings. If your data is being mismanaged or used inappropriately, your business could easily fall behind. If you can hone into what this generation really wants, you could become the biggest brand in retail today.

How Big Data Is Revolutionizing the Customer Experience

According to Pew research, 92% of millennials in the U.S. own a smart phone. This generation has always had immediate access to exactly what they want to see, so they always expect to find what they are looking for. They want you to recognize and anticipate their needs, curate an offer that matches their desire, and adapt your products and services accordingly. Along the way, cookies, downloads, likes, shares, purchases, and opt-ins are tracking their every move. Based on the customer data being collected, the retail industry at large can reform, and even integrate, the in-store and online shopping experience by marketing to millennials using Big Data.

For example, fashion company Rent the Runway began as a website in 2009, and in 2016, they opened a store in New York. The store builds upon the personalized experience of their website and app by analyzing the data they have collected on their buyers’ preferences.

The retail company Nordstrom, which is ranked in the top 200 of the Fortune 500, tracks their most re-pinned Pinterest pins to identify and then promote trending products via digital signage in their stores.

To this end, data can, and should, be collected during every phase of a customer’s buyer journey. Your data governance and data analysis processes should be taking these phases into account in order to map out and predict market trends and demands while building and maintaining highly-optimized customer loyalty programs.

How to Use Big Data for Marketing to Millennials

Because the benefit of collecting Big Data is based on drilling down into your audience to determine their purchasing patterns, it brings a level of precision to marketing strategies that some retailers neglect to take advantage of. Others, like Target Corporation, are so tapped into their customers’ buying habits that they are predicting needs before they occur for the buyer. If used correctly, Big Data can inform your strategy in a way that will set success standards for the next several decades.

Social listening and predictive analysis should reveal insights that help you understand not only product trends, but market demand based on economic indicators and demographic data. Once-anonymous searchers or visitors turn into customers, the data collected from their purchasing habits can either prove or disprove your predictions in order to give you a 360-degree view of your customer base.

What you do with this view will determine your future market position and ultimately the marketability of any future products. Big data should be used to optimize your pricing strategies and reach customers where they are most likely to need you. If, by using your data, you know everything there is to know about your millennial customers, you should be able to find them on their favorite social media platform or search engine. You should be offering them deals and rewards for continuing to be your customer. You should know how they like to be spoken to, what they care about, and why they feel that way.

Simon Sinek, a marketing consultant and motivational speaker, is best known for teaching companies to “start with why.” Customers buy into why you do something, not how you do something or what it is. Millennials grew up with branding being at the epicenter of everything, so the “why” of your brand should feed into the “why” of their personal brand. Do you want more brand loyalists? Use what you know to figure out who they are.

How Will Big Data Impact Your Business?

Retailers today are clearly collecting massive amounts of customer data, and in most cases, customers are gladly giving it away. Big Data has become a well-recognized concept that everyone has invested significant time and energy into perfecting. But we are willing to bet your data still is not perfect and your marketing could be suffering.

Are your current marketing efforts successful? Is your company underperforming based on your previous sales predictions? Do you feel like you have a clear picture of your customer base?

Black Oak Analytics has the software and the expertise to help you derive the appropriate retail marketing strategies for millennials and beyond from your customer database. HiPER, our entity identity information management (EIIM) system, can optimize your data quality while allowing you to efficiently monitor and market to your audience.

When you are ready to talk about how to use Big Data for marketing, contact Black Oak Analytics today! Let us help you create a trustworthy database of entities that will vastly improve your marketing efforts.

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