Millennial myths: Are millennials willing to pay for media?

When determining which types of media your brand needs to be aware of, your first step should be deciding which platforms are more likely to attract your particular audience. But are your misconceptions about generations getting in the way of effective media monitoring?

If generational growth is anything to go buy, millennials are likely to become a significant portion of any company's target audience. In fact, the Harvard Business Review predicts that the generation born between 1977 and 1997 will represent the majority of the global workforce by the end of this year. 

As the majority share of the workforce, millennials are also the most likely generation to be earning - and spending - money across the globe, which means they need to become a primary focus in marketing strategies.

As a young, trend-setting group of consumers, much research has been done to determine the behaviours, desires and leading demographic trends of millennials. However, this has led to many companies buying into preconceived notions about the millennial generation, and potentially putting inadequate strategies in place.

In order to combat some of the misconceptions and myths about millennials and media, we have collected a number of studies that reveal some interesting insights into the unique and surprising behaviours of this generation.

Misconception #1: Millennials prefer digital media

While the internet is taking up a lot of the millennial generation's time and attention, don't write off traditional media just yet. As a recent report from ComScore shows, authoritative news sources, like the New York Times and Wall Street Journal, are still popular media sites among millennials.

Misconception #2: Millennials won't pay for media

With the rise of file-sharing and free-to-stream media channels, many people assume that paid media is relatively dead in the water - particularly among the tech-savvy younger generations.

However, a recent study from Deloitte found that Millennials are willing to spend around US$750 per person on their media consumption each year. Nearly half of this expenditure is dedicated to pay-TV services ($316), followed by music ($125), games ($100) and movies ($75).

This shows that if the value and content is there, millennials will be open to spending on it, so keeping tabs on newspapers hidden behind paywalls, TV-on-demand and other paid services is crucial.

Misconception #3: Millennials are anti-corporation

According to Nielson, millennials are a generation that want a personal touch when engaging with brands, but this doesn't mean they are forgoing the corporate media altogether.

In fact, 84 per cent of millennials admit that user-generated content on a company website has at least some influence over what they purchase, according to Bazaar Voice. At the same time, this generation is 44 per cent more likely to trust industry experts (who happen to be strangers), compared with the older generations.

This shows that although millennials are susceptible to word-of-mouth and user reviews, your company can lend weight to their purchasing decisions, if you have the right content available for them.

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