The Magic of Millennial Marketing [Infographic]

Published on February 23, 2024
Author: Annie DiFazio

Marketing is not a one-size-fits-all approach.  

Just as brands have adapted their marketing efforts to better reach Gen Z—and plan to implement shifts aimed at improving future connections among Gen Alpha—it takes a distinct approach to keep Millennials feeling heard and engaged. 

Millennials vs. Gen Z vs. Gen Alpha 

Let’s start by acknowledging the facts: Millennials paved the way for the generations that follow. 

Millennial influence has been resounding, which is why we often see an overlap in preferences between generations, like topics of interest or like-minded role models. But new research finds the similarities start and end there. 

According to GWI’s 2023 report, Meet the Millennials,” Millennials continue to exhibit drastically different media habits than the likes of Gen Z and Gen Alpha, despite their preceding reputations. While they often cite feelings of anxiety when scrolling through their feeds, Millennials don’t empathize with the Gen Zers who regularly feel bogged down by the pressures of social media. For them, increased susceptibility to burnout and shifting goals are what give Millennials more pause.  

From the way they use social media to the topics and platforms that grab their attention, Millennials continue to prove a one-size-fits-all marketing approach falls flat. 

What Makes Millennial Marketing Different 

With so much on their minds and everyday growth shifting their passions, drivers, and interests, it comes as no surprise that this once digital-dominated generation is spending less and less time tuning into what’s happening online. 

Leaning Into What Drives Them 

Now more than ever, Millennials focus on values, self-care, and building genuine connections—and with that, experience a shift in the passions, interests, and drivers they find most interesting. 

In GWI’s report, we discover what matters most to Millennials including (but not limited to):  

  • Esports 
  • Adventure/Extreme Sports 
  • Reality TV 
  • Entrepreneurship 
  • Vegan Food 
  • Investments 
  • Celebrity News/Gossip 

While some things change, others don’t. To this day, Millennials actively seek out objects of nostalgia.  

Nostalgia—from movies and music to 90s vibes and 80s aesthetics—keeps Millennials grounded. It’s a source of comfort that keeps them connected with their former selves. Today, brands can reaffirm their connection with this generation by focusing on ideals that once sparked their interest and led to their loyalty. 

To connect further, brands can prioritize listening to customer feedback and go the extra mile with post-purchase support. Brands can circumvent customer deterrents with sustainability promises, value commitments, smart spending offerings, and more. 

Speaking of smart spending, Millennial markets are not only refocusing their priorities, but they are also refocusing their spending. From altering where they spend their salaries to altering purchase habits due to fears of inflation, unemployment, retirement, and the like, Millennials are favoring smart spending more than ever as ‘adulting’ weighs heavy on their minds. 

Understanding Millennial Media Habits 

For Millennials, podcast reign supreme. 

As on-the-move multitaskers, they continue to spearhead podcast industry growth, tending to not only listen during commutes but also browse new genres and explore new experts across top topics like parenting, gaming, and tech. 

Speaking of gaming… 

While Millennials and Gen Zers often spend the same amount of time gaming, their connection to the industry goes further. Unlike Gen Z, who uses gaming as a tool for socialization or a means to escape reality, Millennials use it to compete—which is why they are often more likely to vlog process, livestream play, and engage in gaming chatrooms online. 

With such strong connections with online voices, it’s no wonder that 1 in 3 Millennials consider influencer recommendations more trustworthy than regular brand ads. Their loyalty comes as no surprise to us, considering their legacy as the first consumers exposed to influencer marketing! Capitalizing on influencers and fostering the right partnerships means less concern regarding potential brand misinformation and more appreciation for core values. 

Though it’s important to remember how much (and how fast) the Millennial generation has grown over the years, we can’t forget that they’re the ‘internet generation’ at heart. 

Memes and emojis? Millennials get them.  

In fact, Millennials use memes more often than Gen Z—noting they find them to not only be funny but useful in expressing emotions or ideas. The same goes for emojis—while younger generations tend to use emojis most often, Millennials are more confident in understanding what they mean and when to use them. 

Where Millennials Spend Their Time 

Some things never change—the Facebook generation is still alive and well, with Millennials citing this Meta channel as their most-liked and most-used platform to date. How do other apps fair? 

Despite topping the charts, platforms like TikTok were abuzz thanks to the platform’s unique creation tools and opportunities to jump on viral trends.  

What’s most surprising is the great divide happening among older and younger Millennials—with life stage playing a role in their separation. Those closer to the Gen Z cusp prefer spending their time on Instagram, whereas those closer to the Gen X cusp prefer WhatsApp. This stark contrast in platform preferences across the Millennial generation proves brands must not rely on a one-size-fits-all marketing approach. 

Mapping the Millennial Marketing Journey 

How can brands engage with and market to the growing, ever-changing generation of Millennials? Ask them! Check out what Millennials want out of brand marketing, per GWI. 

New Ways to Discover Brands 

According to Millennials, successful, discoverable brands are those who regularly update social media channels, highlight reviews from experts or influencers, and advertise on streaming services.  

Easy Access to Product Research 

To better understand a brand, product, or service, Millennials tend to turn to blog posts, messaging or live-chat services, forums, or message boards. 

Offer Coveted Purchase Drivers 

From ‘pay with cash on delivery’ payment options to ‘buy’ buttons on social media, Millennials note that these benefits would increase their likelihood of purchasing.  

Share a Slice of Brand Advocacy Pie 

Millennials want in—it makes them more likely to advocate for your brand, after all. Motivate. Invite. Involve. Share insider knowledge, grant access to exclusive content, or even tout custom services for improved affinity and lasting loyalty. 



It’s Time to Learn, Earn, and Grow! 

Abandon that one-size-fits-all approach and refocus your efforts on marketing to the ever-growing audience of Millennials as they navigate life changes, set real-world goals, and evolve. 

AGAIN Interactive helps brands like yours connect with their best audiences—Millennials included! Drop us a line at to build lasting relationships, navigate this ever-changing generation, and stand out. 

Annie DiFazio

A member of the account team at AGAIN Interactive since 2016, loves strategically collaborating with clients on their digital needs, hitting goals, and moving the needle. When she's not busy multitasking the day away, you can find her enjoying the outdoors with her kids, her husband, and her two big dogs!

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