Millennials live for experiences more than any generation before. They’re looking for travel experiences, different career experiences, and great experiences with products they buy.
The Millennials’ quest for experiences is a little bit of a departure from spending habits of the Baby Boomers, who are a little more focused on obtaining tangible items and the stuff they see as part of the good life. For Millennials, Forbes reports that 70% cite funding travel as a motivation to work, which is second only to obtaining basic necessities.
The trend away from traditional ownership of items continues: 30% of Millennials say they don’t feel strongly about buying a house, and an additional 30% say they never plan to own a house or don’t plan to buy one in the near future according to the Washington Post. Almost one third say they don’t plan to buy a car, since lots of Millennials are living in cities or plan to live in cities where they can use car sharing, public transportation, and bikes to get around. Only 15% say that owning a television is really important. It’s not that they aren’t consuming video media, it’s more that Millennials are getting it through laptops, mobile phones, and tablets.
While they seek travel and upscale dining experiences to share with friends, Millennials are also experience-focused in terms of daily essentials. A report from Goldman Sachs shows that Millennials want to be healthy, and they will put a premium on eating well and having a healthy lifestyle. RangeMe says 80% look at nutritional content and 81% are willing to pay more for food items that with health benefits. Millennials are also willing to spend on athletic clothing and shoes.
Of course, they love to share on social media about discoveries in trying various products – and it helps fellow buyers in their age range in making decisions about what brands to buy. 90% are on social media. 92% of Millennials own a smartphone, and 57% use it to actively compare prices while shopping in stores according to RangeMe. Social media has become an outlet for people’s opinions. Product evangelists spread the word about great product experiences, and negative reviews deride brands that failed to live up. Beyond Design finds that Millennial users have high expectations for a seamless product experience. Annalect discovered that 52% consider how a brand uses technology before buying from that brand.
What do Millennials seek when they buy products? RangeMe finds that they want to see innovation: 81% are willing to pay more for innovative products. Millennials want to see product information when doing their research ahead of time and a place to rate and review products and companies after the purchase. Wired reports that Millennials have the highest expectations yet for good interfaces and are quick to switch away from bad experiences on digital devices.
Millennials have set the bar at new heights when it comes to expectations of a holistic product experience. They’re looking for strong use of technology, plenty of product information, and a seamless product experience. It’s as true for travel and dining as it is for basic daily necessities and everything in between. The total package leverages great experience at all levels.