Market research firm Mintel recently found that 60% of Millennials (ages range from 18 to 33 in 2014) are willing to provide details about their personal preferences and habits to marketers, while Baby Boomers are far more reserved. The same study also found that even for the most private information, 30% of Millennials who said they would not share it would actually change their mind if they were offered a coupon or another incentive. Only 13% of Boomers would change their mind if offered similar incentives.
The take-away? Millennial shoppers are the drive behind in-store personalization in retail.
The first – and arguably the most important – step to in-store personalization is to prompt your shopper to opt-in. Through your guest Wi-Fi, mobile app, or loyalty program, you need to obtain consent from shoppers to engage in that conversation with your brand. According to Mintel, most Millennials (roughly a quarter of the population) would not hesitate. If you make the communication relevant, Millennial shoppers will agree to engage.
And personalization is much more than mere customization. Customization (or localization) means delivering different experiences to groups of people who share certain attributes; for instance, delivering localized content or merchandise based on geographical location and time of the day. “Tech savvy millennials require more brand interaction opportunities than advertising,” said Retail Consultant Jason Baker in a recent CNBC article. Personalization goes beyond that to engage in a one-on-one conversation with the individual shopper. It combines customization with customer preferences for brand, category, size, and style.
In order to deliver on these individual preferences, retailers have to gather information from the Millennial shopper which, according to the report, they are disposed to sharing. “The key to mining that precious data isn’t in the raw data itself, but crafting it into a tailored, meaningful and engaging message for the Millennial consumer,” says Mintel Retail Category Manager Fiona O’Donnell in Mintel’s press release.
The new person calling the shots across all channels is the Millennial shopper: she expects a personalized marketing plan, a connection with the brand, product that has value, and an enhanced shopping experience. Addressing this generation in a personalized way that is timely and relevant to them increases their loyalty and engagement with a brand, ultimately enriching the entire shopping experience.
Retail Analyst Jeff Green said on CNBC, “[Millennials] are pretty big spenders. They like to shop, it’s just how they shop that’s different.”
To learn more about the “5 Steps to Achieving Personalization,” access the full recording of the In-Store Personalization webinar here.