Millennials may not have the kind of buying power as the Baby Boomers, but that will change soon as today’s 20-and-30-year-olds enter their 40s. This is why companies want to wrap their heads around the customer-experience preferences of this younger demographic–typically described as those born between 1982 and 1994.
To this end, global marketing information services company J.D. Power has tapped its vast trove of consumer studies to create what it describes as the most comprehensive report on Millennials to date, the first-ever “Millennials Insight Report: The Customer Experience Perspective.”
The complete report is available to J.D. Power report subscribers and select clients, but the company has publicly shared some key findings regarding Millennials consumer attitudes. They include:
- Millennials can be very loyal–but only if customer service comes through for them. The study found that this younger group has the lowest tolerance for errors and delays compared to other generations. However, when problems are resolved to their satisfaction, they are more likely than Boomers to become brand advocates, using a product or service again.
- Millennials are generally more satisfied as consumers compared to Boomers (those born between 1946 and 1964). Across 15 industries involved in the studies, Millennials score 5 points higher, on average, on a 1,000-point satisfaction scale, compared to Boomers. When broken down by industry, Millennials have some very high satisfaction scores: +37 points with utilities, +28 points with healthcare and +13 with telecom.
- Millennials want value. They are more likely to purchase something based on its value for the money, rather than for other motivations such as status, image or brand loyalty.
- Millennials accept a trade-off between privacy and responsiveness to consumers. As J.D. Power puts it, Millennials “accept the erosion of privacy as inevitable and are generally willing to have their information collected if it comes with benefits in the form of targeted offers and personalized services.”
- A youthful optimism. Millennials haven’t accumulated as much wealth as generations before them, they have less income and higher debt, but they tend to be optimistic about the economy and their financial future.
Keith Webster, senior vice president and general manager, service industries Americas at J.D. Power, says there are nuances of the Millennial generation–a unique and highly diverse group–that set them apart from other demographic groups.
“… it’s those nuances that are so critical for business leaders to know right now as they wrestle with the challenge of anticipating customer demand in an incredibly fast-moving marketplace, where getting it wrong can have catastrophic effects,” Webster said. “We believe this research helps to demystify the Millennial generation by offering concrete data on their real-world consumer interactions.”