The Millennials are Coming. Are You Ready?
As of 2015, the millennials, defined as those born between the early 1980s and the early 2000s, outnumber both the Baby Boomers and Gen Xers in sheer volume. (Pew Research http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/04/25/millennials-overtake-baby-boomers/) By 2020, 46 percent of the US workforce will be millennials. And, it is reported that these individuals account $1.3 trillion in annual spending, which doesn’t include millennial—influenced spending by their parents and grandparents.
Who are millennials?
For some of my readers, they are your children and grandchildren. Studies show they have the following characteristics:
• They work and play online, mostly on mobile devices.
• They welcome access over ownership in a new “sharing” economy, think UBER, bike sharing.
• They expect media, information, services and purchases to be available on demand.
• They are socially aware and assume that companies, firms, individuals will be active in the community and give back.
• They know more about technology than any other generation; they live in a world of sharable information.
What legal issues could millennials, aged 18-34 in 2015, have?
They are buying houses, estate planning for their children, starting businesses or helping their aging parents. And some are having criminal problems. MADD reports that the 26-29 year olds (20.7 %) have the highest rate of drunk driving. Think about how your services can be of use to this younger audience.
How can lawyers reach millennials?
Millennials are never out of touch—they live by their mobile phones and expect the information they need such as reviews, social media commentary, price comparisons to be instantly available. For law firms, that means their website, profiles and blogs must be mobile friendly. Your law blog should be informative, short, engaging and easy to read on a smaller screen.
Being active on social media such as Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn is an effective way to ensure millennials see your firm, interact and engage with you, learn something from you and eventually employ your legal services.
In the interests of hands-on research, I texted my millennial grandson, Collin, 22-year-old, bio-molecular engineer living and working in New York city, asking one question—How would you find lawyer? He texted back, “I would ask one of my fraternity brothers who are lawyers.” And “I would Google my geographic area and the kind of service I needed. Then I’d check their website and then try to find some sort of review or blog post written by a past client.”
Two marketing concepts are at work here. He began the usual way, asking friends for referrals, showing the importance of face to face marketing. Then he used the millennial way—going to the Internet to find and investigate lawyers in his area. And, it’s reasonable to assume he would do this on his phone.
Would millennial Collin find your mobile friendly, easily accessible website?