We all protect our privacy, holding it near and dear. Today, there are many debates surrounding online privacy, and it’s safe to assume most don’t want their personal information out there for the world to see. However, Millennials seem to be breaking this norm.
Ranging from 18 to 34 years of age, USA TODAY reported that the University of Southern California’s Center for the Digital Future in conjunction with Bovotiz Inc. found that Millennials are the most willing of any generation to divulge their personal information online, even more so when there is a reward for them as a result. This is not to say that Millennials don’t enjoy their right to privacy. 70% of them believe no one should have direct access to their information or web behavior, but they do like the benefits they receive from giving it out.
Engaging with companies has become an instinct with this generation. They know the more they engage, the greater the benefits they receive. For example, there can be a 20% discount on a brands site, but if you follow them on Twitter you receive 30% off. Elaine Coleman, managing director of media and emerging technology at Bovitz Inc., stated, ”Millennials are all about exchange of information. [They say], ‘Sure, if you send me a relevant ad, I’ll tell you where I am.’ ” Growing up with technology has fostered this way of thinking because it has always been the path for these young users to connect globally.
Millennials are a significant portion of today’s marketing audience and they have a lot of influence on each other. In Marketing Charts coverage of the report, they noted that at least 48% of Millennials access social media sites several times a day, compared to only 20% of those 35 years old and above. This means Millennials have a greater potential to influence peers than those of an older generation. Millennials also reportedly contact at least 18 people via social networking sites. Since 70% of consumers trust a stranger’s recommendation, marketers need to attract this generation with special offers in exchange for their information to gain better insight into their behaviors and offer a better user experience. This can result in an increase of sales for a brand as well as greater loyalty.
Millenials’ value their privacy, but they are more willing to hand over their information if there’s a reward involved. The more information they give to brands, the more a brand can reward them, gain consumer insight and spur a series of word-of-mouth interactions. Give Millennials special benefits, and you will receive them in return.