Why Hospitality Companies Need to Market to Millennials

Employer Articles / October 14, 2020

Previously, we wrote about how millennials unemployment is one of the highest rates among all generations, and how this could in turn affect millennials sending money towards travel and hospitality.

Who are millennials 

The millennial generation was born between 1980 and 2000, making the oldest millennials 40 years old and the youngest 20 years old. In 2016, millennials surpassed baby boomers as the largest demographic in the United States, according to the U.S Census Bureau. 

Before the pandemic hit and halted many of our travel and vacation plans, industry experts stated that they expected millennials to make up 50% of all hotel guests by 2020, and that 52% of millennials were working on saving up for a vacation, higher than all other generations. 

Millennials also eat out more than other generations, whether at a restaurant or by ordering take-out, and are generally willing to spend more money on organic food when eating out or ordering food. 

Why should hospitality companies focus a large part of their marketing strategies towards millennials? In 2018, millennials spent $200 billion on travel and 55% wanted to increase the volume of trips they were going to take. So, it’s safe to say, millennials are a huge driving force for hospitality. 

Marketing strategies 

Hospitality companies should consider using some or all of these tactics to get more millennials to choose their prosperities, services or restaurants when traveling or going out to eat next. 

  • Create a strong presence on mobile devices and social media: Millennials are always connected, especially when they are on the go. They are also using social media apps more than anyone else, with 70% of millennials following travel brand on social media, while 97% of millennials share photos on their own social media channels while traveling. Hospitality companies can utilize millennials as a way to get the word out about their properties and services by encouraging travelers to post while at their properties. Instagramable areas at the property can encourage more postings and help get more travelers to make reservations and continue to spread the word.  
  • Align your brand marketing with social causes (and truly mean it): We’re experiencing a time with a lot of societal issues, and millennials support brands who decide to take a stance on those issues. Granted, that stance has to be true to the company’s mission and values, and not just a publicity opportunity. In order to appeal to millennials, hospitality brands should proudly display the company’s views and commitment to whatever cause they align with across their marketing. Companies can also consider making donations to organizations or partnering with organizations to double the efforts towards those causes. 
  • Create dynamic, engaging content: 70% of millennials value experiences over things, and 86% said that they didn’t want to miss out on life experiences. The hospitality industry is built around providing experience for their guests, so they can easily use that as their marketing strategy by posting pictures of guests enjoying their services or food. Most millennials won’t take the time to read through a long-form article, however they will watch a video on a social media platform about the experience your company can offer them. 

Although millennials are not the only generation that hospitality companies need to market to, they are an important one.