5 Things CPG Brands Should Know About Millennials

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Millennials have surpassed Baby Boomers as the largest living generation in the US, accounting for 24% of the American population. 77 million strong, millennials are growing in purchasing power and influencing the way brands interact with customers.

Consumer packaged goods brands in particular are changing their strategies to appeal to this younger generation, with millennials projected to spend $65 billion on CPGs over the next decade. Here are five things CPG brands need to know about millennial shoppers in order to create lifelong customers from this growing generation.

  1. Shopping research doesn’t start in the grocery aisle. 50% of millennial shoppers discover new products outside of the store, and the generation as a whole is 2.4x more likely than Baby Boomers to research grocery products online before buying in-store. Millennials are nearly twice as likely to use digital channels to learn about new CPG products as Baby Boomers.
  2. Technology follows them into the store. 77% of millennials have their phones with them at all times, and they are 2.7x more likely than Baby Boomers to use their smartphones regularly for in-store payments. They also do research and compare prices on their phones in-stores, with 53% wishing they could find coupons in digital form on their phones.
  3. Millennials weigh sustainability and corporate responsibility more heavily. Half of US 18- to 24-year-olds agree that brands say something about who they are, their values, and where they fit in, so they take care to buy from brands that hold themselves to a higher standard. 90% of millennials would switch brands to one that is associated with a cause.
  4. They like to be on the cutting edge of food trends. Millennials are twice as likely to try new products as Baby Boomers and quicker to jump on new trends. They are food-smart and 38% more likely to buy natural and organic products, and demand higher quality, healthy foods at a fair price.
  5. Fresh food is important, but their time is limited. Millennials want fresh foods but don’t always have time to cook, so are willing to pay more for packaged fresh foods. And appearances matter: three-quarters of millennials said they would choose soup packaged in a carton over the same exact soup packaged in a can because they believe cartons indicate fresher products. They also appreciate packaging that is resealable and lets them use what they need without being wasteful.

As millennials grow in spending power and demand more from their shopping experiences, CPG brands have to change their marketing tactics to reach this prime demographic. Ad dollars will continue to be allocated to social media channels, where millennials spend the bulk of their time online. For insights into how CPG brands can tap into social advertising to reach shoppers young and old, download Adaptly’s social advertising guide for CPG brands.