Consistent with Cone’s findings from our millennial cause research, companies continue to improve their approaches to engaging this socially and environmentally conscious generation.
In the news this week alone, we see that companies are carefully crafting messages to reach millennials in their roles as employees, citizens and consumers. As employees, many companies are overhauling recruitment materials and pitches to highlight their community service and environmental initiatives to attract the interest of top young talent. And as consumers and citizens, companies such as Patagonia are aligning their cause-related messages to tap the energy of the presidential campaign. In Patagonia’s case, the company is striving to educate millennials about politicians’ records on environmental issues and encouraging them to “Vote the Environment.”
Despite the millennial generation’s penchant for making a difference, consumerism has not escaped it. This generation is drawn to “mass brand experiences” which appeal to their communal, pro-social nature, and according to the 2008 College Explorer study, this year’s college class (age 18-30) brings with it a record $237 billion in consumer spending, an increase of 20 percent since 2007. It’s a ripe field for responsible brands.