The next generation of prospective parents have officially arrived: meet the Millennials.
There are currently around 7.6 million Millennials in Australia (born between 1981 - 1996), with numbers expected to grow to 8.3 million over the next decade.
In terms of their interests and values, Millennials are unlike any generation before them, so it’s important to understand what influences their purchasing behaviour -- especially when it comes to choosing an education for their children. In this post, we’re going to take a look at some of the key considerations that will help you better market your school to Millennial parents.
They look for social proof
When it comes to marketing, Millennials don’t trust traditional forms of advertising. That’s right, TV ads, radio announcements, billboards, and direct mail don’t have any influence over this generation. Instead, we’re seeing Millennials turn to word-of-mouth marketing through Google reviews and Facebook recommendations. Research shows that 84 per cent of people trust online reviews as much as they trust their friends, so it’s essential to focus on building your school’s social proof.
What’s social proof? Let’s take a look at this definition from Professor and Psychologist Robert Cialdini:
“Determining what is correct by finding out what other people think is correct.”
Essentially what Robert is saying here is that we trust testimonials or reviews from others in order to determine what we think about a particular topic, product or thing.
So, how do you build social proof for your school? In our opinion, the best way to get started is by building an online review strategy. If you receive our weekly marketing emails, you might have noticed that we’ve been working on our own review strategy! Starting with Facebook and Google, encourage and incentivise your school community to leave positive reviews and boost your school’s digital reputation.+
They love social media
It’s no secret that Millennials love social media. In fact, did you know that 88 per cent of them are active on at least one social media platform? It’s clear that social media is an essential part of any school’s digital marketing strategy -- especially when it comes to engaging Millennial parents.
So, we know that building an online presence is important, but with limited time and resources, it can be difficult choosing which platforms to focus your time on. According to Roy Morgan’s recent report on Australian social media usage, Facebook still maintains the top spot for most used social media platforms. What you might not know is that of all the social media platforms out there, image sharing platforms have seen the most growth in the past year than any other platform category. Instagram, for example, has seen adoption growth of 238.1 per cent between 2015 - 2019.
A key point to remember when planning content for your school’s social media channels is that Millennials look for authentic experiences. They don’t want to see highly polished and curated social media feeds anymore, instead, they look for genuine moments. For tips on how you can embrace authenticity when it comes to social media, check out our previous post: 3 things parents expect from your school marketing.
They’re the highest users of smartphones
When it comes to smartphone usage, Millennials outrank any other generational group. Smartphones are an integral part of their lives, using them to make purchases, stay connected with friends and family and more. Just take a look at Google’s findings in the table below.
What does this mean for your school? Well, if you want to attract and engage Millennial parents, it’s essential to ensure that all elements of your digital content -- from your website to your blog and enrolment form -- are optimised for mobile.
They value experiences over products
Across all facets of life, Millennials look for alignment with their personal values above all else, so it’s important to keep this in mind when marketing to them. Defining your school’s USP is a great place to start as it allows your school to focus on your why rather than your what. Once you know what sets your school apart from the competition, you can leverage your USP to craft communication that resonates with Millennial parents.
Are you ready to take your digital marketing skills to the next level? Then get your hands on The Complete Social Media Toolkit for schools!