Promotional Emails Impact Millennials’ Purchase Decisions

September 28, 2016

MediaPost | September 28, 2016 – Several recent studies have shown that millennials are less brand loyal than preceding generations. A recent Daymon Worldwide global study showed that only 29% of millennials usually buy the same brand, compared with 35% of Gen Xers. And, an Accenture study from last year showed that millennials change banks more than twice as often as other consumers.

As a result of this lack of brand loyalty, it is critical for marketers to understand how to reach the millennial generation. Most recently, Fluent conducted a nationwide survey of 1,769 millennials and 1,191 non-millennials to better understand millennials’ device usage and interaction with various digital media channels, and their relationship to impacting purchasing decisions, says the report.

Some of the key findings are repeated here from the Fluent study, saying that Smartphones are the most popular device with millennials, as 7 in 8 millennials own one. 51% spend the highest proportion of their online time using their smartphones and 49% use them to make purchases at least monthly, as much as any other platform.

Millennials make the majority of their purchases on computers and smartphones, says the report. Computers are about on par with smartphones as the devices used to make online purchases. Smartphones are somewhat more likely to be used at least monthly, while computers are somewhat more likely to be used at least weekly.

Despite the dominance of smartphones, computers remain an important purchase device for millennials. Nearly 1 in 3 millennials use computers to make purchases at least weekly. However, younger millennials, aged 18-24, use computers less often to make purchases than their older counterparts, says the report.

Millennials own smartwatches at nearly twice the rate of the general population, says the report. 44% say they own smartwatches compared with only 23% of non-millennials. Despite having less disposable income, millennials are more likely than older generations to purchase Apple products across all four device categories studied. Apple products, particularly the iPhone, are disproportionately popular with millennials.

43% of millennials say Facebook is the social media platform they use most often, compared with 61% of non-millennials. Among the youngest cohort of millennials, 18- 24 year olds, other networks including YouTube, Instagram & Snapchat have nearly caught up to Facebook, says the report. Facebook, however, is losing share to other platforms at a greater pace among millennials than non-millennials, says the report.

Promotional emails were the most effective digital advertising medium asked about in the survey at influencing millennial purchase decisions. 68% of millennials said that promotional emails impacted their purchase decisions at least on a few occasions, says the report.

Promotional emails edge out other digital mediums in their impact on millennial purchase decisions. 68% of millennials said their purchase decisions were impacted at least occasionally by promotional emails, compared with 63% for ads on social media networks and ads on news and entertainment websites, and 56% for promotional text messages, says the report.

Counteracting the notion that millennials don’t respond to email marketing, promotional emails influence millennials better than older generations. 10% more millennials than older generations (26% to 16%) say promotional emails are influential ‘all or most of the time’.

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