Consumer trends inspired by the Millennial Mindset
Millennial Mindset consumers are compelled to document and share their stories to define and communicate their social status. When your product or service helps to elevate your customer’s social currency, you’ve tapped into a powerful marketing opportunity.
Mobile internet access is widely considered the most important hotel or resort amenity for Millennial Mindset travelers. This impacts not only how destinations are marketed, but how travellers consume and experience the destination.
Mistrust of marketing
87% of Millennial mindset consumers distrust traditional advertising, while 80% of travelers in this demographic say that reviews have a significant influence on their travel decisions. If you are not actively participating in review sites where your product is discussed, you are missing the most important channel for influencing Millennial Mindset consumers.
The sharing economy
Forty percent of U.S. Millennials use Airbnb or other sharing services. That said, 58% of Millennials say that a full-service hotel or resort is still their first choice. Millennial Mindset consumers will seek out accommodation that appeals to their sense of novelty — that could be Airbnb, but it could also be a full service hotel.
Millennials are not concerned with weight loss and looking good, but with being healthy, reducing stress and connecting spiritually. Resorts need to refocus their programming and product development on the active Millennial mindset traveler by integrating activities that go beyond the hotel gym.
Festival culture has spawned a seemingly contradictory trend: health and fitness are not mutually exclusive of hedonistic experiences such as drinking and clubbing. Don’t assume that health-conscious travelers are all about wholesome activity. Millennial Mindset consumers like to mix a little fun, and a solid dose of spirituality and hedonism, with their sweat.
Consumers now expect hotels and resorts to incorporate ecological or social responsibility into their day-to-day operations. Some creative concepts include Amsterdam’s Good Hotel, which re-integrates unemployed locals, and Vancouver’s Skwachàys Lodge and Residence, which provides subsidized apartments and high-end accommodation.
A defining feature of the Millennial Mindset traveler is a desire to experience rare, obscure and remote destinations. Tour providers are delivering, resulting in a growing number of tours to Antarctica, Galapagos and other remote locales.
The travel industry is adapting its offerings to a growing interest in ‘intangible heritage’, which sees them participating in popular culture, local traditions and storytelling. This creates opportunities for the travel industry to cultivate healthy and mutually beneficial relationships with local and indigenous cultures.
Millennial Mindset travelers are increasingly experiencing cuisine as a full-scale cultural travel experience, to be shared on social platforms. Food is no longer a side dish; it’s the main event. Destinations are dramatically improving their culinary offerings to entice affluent and savvy travelers.
From Lululemon’s in-store yoga studios to Nike’s Community Store program, global brands and independent retailers are opening bricks and mortar stores that function as both retailers and community hubs. Bricks and mortar retail locations have become branded experiential extensions of their online counterparts.
U.S. Millennials are more likely than other demographics to combine a business trip with leisure travel that aligns with their personal interests. Millennial Mindset travellers are not drawn by the usual conference amenities. Draw them in with curated itineraries that bring together luxury amenities, adventure travel and personal development.
Millions of millionaires
There are more than 35 million millionaires in the world today — an increase of 12% — and millionaires are getting younger. Millennial millionaires are not satisfied with run-of-the-mill all inclusive holiday experiences. Draw them in with highly curated, customized dining, sightseeing and novelty.
A brave new world of informed, curated, luxury travel
Millennials are here to stay. Even more so that other generational demographics — Generation X and Baby Boomers — are taking cultural cues from this large, affluent and influential market. We’re quickly learning that Millennials are culturally and economically setting the stage for a brave new world of curated luxury and adventure in the resort and travel industry. In response, the industry needs to deeply understand the Millennial Mindset to curate offerings and marketing campaigns that tap into their interests and desires.
About SIA Member Origin Design: We are one part urban chic and one part dirt-bag ski bum. We are storytellers and strategists. Mavens and marketers. Dreamers and doers. Technologists and traditionalists. We are a digitally-driven creative, branding and marketing agency, and we understand that the work we do is no longer about advertising. It is about making connections, being true, becoming useful and motivating your customers to live a more inspired life.