This blog post was written by Emily Palermo, ViewPoint Panel Coordinator for Research & Marketing Strategies (RMS) and one of our resident Gen Ys.

Generation Ys, also known as millennials, are individuals who were born in the 1980s to the 2000s. They are an important segment of our population since it consists of over 80 million people in the United States alone. Those in Generation Y are typically tech-savvy, they value convenience, are brand-conscious, but not brand loyal. It can be difficult to get the attention of Gen Ys, and even harder to keep it.

3 Tips for Reaching Generation Y

3 Tips for Reaching Generation Y


So you may be wondering how to reach Generation Y with your marketing, advertising, and communications. Using market research through focus groups and surveys can teach you a lot of things about your target audience. We’ve learned when connecting with Gen Ys businesses should focus on the following 3 factors:

  • (1) Be clear and transparent.
  • (2) Keep messages short.
  • (3) Incorporate cleverness.

(1) Clarity and transparency are both more than just having effective sentence structure.  Gen Ys, like most consumers, want to clearly understand the purposes of your business and social media account. If you have not already, ensure that your company website, as and well as all of your messages are straightforward. As for social media, say the purpose of the account in the “about me” section, and be honest. Make sure the reason you are creating a twitter makes sense. Rarely do social media accounts that are solely created to sell something become successful. An example of a good purpose could be to build your social community.

(2) Keeping messages short can be difficult, but it is necessary for reaching Gen Ys. Keep your message simple by not plugging additional information about your business. It is also important to keep messaging frequent, but vary the timings of messages. This ensures that it is not always the same people who are seeing your messages. Most Gen Ys are connected to social media regularly, but they may consistently be missing your posts.

(3) Cleverness is what grabs and keeps the attention of Gen Ys, and it is more than simply creating hash tags. One simple way to incorporate cleverness into messages is through using humor. Create messages that accomplish the same meaning, but use a pun or wittiness. However, make sure the message is still effective. You should not sacrifice clarity for cleverness. You can dedicate some messages to be frank, and others to be creative. Also, the use of creative photos and videos always help to bring credibility to your business in the minds of Gen Ys.

Social media is great for connecting with consumers, but with Gen Ys you have to earn their following. Gen Ys need to see a benefit for following a business. One way is to make your twitter page interesting. You can do this by participating in trends, using photos, and creating videos. When businesses tweet too frequently about business related topics you may see your followers decrease. However, when businesses tweet too frequently about topics not business related you may also see your followers decrease as well. You need to have a happy medium of staying on top of social media trends, and keeping followers updated on business. I would say that if your business is tweeting two to three times a day, one tweet should be trend related and the other one/two should be business related. Remember to keep both types of posts clear, short, and clever. Taking into account all of this information means that you need to be strategic with all of your communication efforts.

If you are interested in learning more about reaching Generation Y through message testing using focus groups, surveys, or other market research methodologies contact Sandy Baker, our Business Development Director at RMS at or by calling 1-866-567-5422.