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Shopping & Sharing: Social Media is the Key to Reaching Young Consumers

The younger generation of consumers represents a revolution in the ways people shop. The most obvious change is the expansion of online shopping, but millennial shoppers also look for the even greater flexibility that comes with the newest trends impacting consumer behavior: mobile shopping and social media.

Traditional marketing has found it difficult to reach the millennial demographic, which numbers 80 million. Social media marketing has become the best way to gain traction. An authentic, relatable, and in-touch social media account is the most valuable asset a company can have these days and young shoppers prefer companies who are knowledgeable about trends and with whom they can interact directly via platforms like Twitter. When it comes to the visual side of marketing, companies are expanding their presence on Instagram and even Snapchat in order to reach the social media savvy targets. Being able to see an image of a product on Instagram from their phone, click a link, and make a purchase is the gold standard for mobile shopping, social media marketing, and customer user experience.

Who decides what’s trendy and the key influencers of customer behavior have shifted along with the medium. The days of celebrity spokes people starring in TV and print ads are gone. Today’s young shoppers look to more relatable figures for guidance on what’s trending, like stars who’ve made their names on blogs or YouTube. Similarly, the use of social media by celebrities has granted unprecedented access to their fans, so the most popular stars don’t even need to star in commercials to give their endorsement to a product. When a specific phone or tablet case, pair of headphones, or other accessory shows up in Taylor Swift’s Instagram feed it represents the most trustworthy, authentic confirmation of quality a young customer can find.

So how can you find your niche in this dynamic world of hashtags and Snapchat stories? Maintaining an active presence on social media is crucial, and targeting the messages on each platform to its users. The right way to announce a sale or promote a new accessory on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram is going to vary because of the medium, the way it’s received, and who is receiving it, so pay attention to the messaging you’re putting out there and where. Additionally, staying up to date on the biggest social media stars and following their accounts can help you get ahead of the competition when it comes to identifying new trends. If you’re seeing the new iPhone case in Swift’s selfie at the same time your customers are, you’ll know it has received her stamp of approval and young customers are likely going to be searching for it. Finally, streamlining a mobile shopping experience for your customers will increase your appeal. Flexibility in how young customers browse and buy, and options like ordering online and picking up in store, will not only increase sales but also drive store traffic.

The new generation of consumers may be the most informed ever, which means they expect even more from the companies they do business with. By reaching them in the ways they prefer, you can become a trusted source for their mobile needs and one of the greatest features of this generation is that, while they may be among your toughest customers, they are also among the most loyal customer demographics. Stay on top of these mobile, social marketing trends and make the most of the opportunities these new shoppers present.

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