Saturday, August 15, 2015

Millennials Connect with “Being Real”, Not Being Politically Correct

There was a delay in the posting of this blog.

I dedicated one blog post already this year to the Millennials. It showcases a lot about who they are and what drives them in terms of what they seek and who they aspire to be.

However, I feel very compelled to post another blog entry about them. This time highlighting just how simplistic reality drives them more than what’s politically correct.

This past week, the Wall Street Journal published another top news story about the Millennials. This time showcasing that they now represent the majority share of the American workforce.

They ran an article the week before about how the television and cable networks are facing a sliding decline of audience share as the Millennials enter their primary target group of Adults 25–54.

I am not too amazed how HGTV and Adult Swim continue to do well. Both networks have fashioned programming — much of it niche targeted — around the Millennials.

While HGTV and Adult Swim get it right, the other networks face continued ratings decline.

Here’s an audience group that custom fashions the content of their social media pages and Google search websites based on niche-defined needs… and network after network tries to become more like the other struggling, lack of any defined personality networks just to be the one touting the highest ratings.

Like him or hate him, Donald Trump is a stellar example of the Millennial mindset. While not a Millennial, Trump is the personification of Millennial Facebook postings.

Millennials never hold back commentary, factual or not, in their posts and do so for all to read with little rational or accountability.

Donald Trump is the personification of a Facebook or Twitter post.

He leads in the polls right now and the media has no idea of how to assess it. Many believe that voting public will get rational quickly and Trump will have no chance.

Obama came into office in 2008 because the Millennials were just beginning to embrace “mid-century culture” and “Hope”and “Change We Can Believe In” was quickly married with “Peace” and “Love.”

And its not just Trump capitalizing on the Millennials.

Bernie Sanders is certainly making waves… and the political armchair critics dismiss his DNC rise because he appeals too much to the younger, Millennial, ideal seekers.

Anyone who comments that Joe Biden has little chance of winning over Hillary only has to Google “Bidenisms” and can quickly see how Joe and Donald just might be related.

Politicians that run on platforms of bringing back the past and a return to a moral compass are so out of it that I wonder just who is running with their consultancy dollars.

The Millennials do not care if commentary is politically-correct. As the Boomer academics preach the no-nos of non-politically correct terms and phrases, the Millennials are texting their “friends” and wondering just what these folks smoked before dinner.

The presidential race is global in many perspectives. Shoot right here in Atlanta, in our newest city of Brookhaven, we saw politics turn upside down as the leading-edge Gen X mayor was defeated by a Millennial in the bid for a House District rep.

Historically, Brookhaven has been so Republican that in some circles, the red turns deep crimson.

Not only was the late 20-something elected and had never before been involved in politics, he was also a democrat.

I send out an Email to fellow Chamber of Commerce Board members in Brookhaven and highlighted that what I preached about Millennials and how they were driving the community was, in fact, real. I laughed when at least five individuals Emailed me back and said that they had no idea what I was talking about and saw no connection with the outcome of the local race.

Okay. Wonder if they have any programs to help Boomers come out of the closet and accept that the Millennials are here… and in charge!

Another Atlanta news-story that hit this week is that builders, developers and community planners are re-assessing new housing and will be pressing for smaller square foot single-family homes.

As stated in the news clip, “we are pushing for more 1,500 square feet or less, cottage-style and contemporary design homes versus the McMansion rage of the past several years.

Wow. Maybe some of those builders, developers and community planners watch HGTV Tiny House shows and found the shows inspiring. Or maybe they came to a reality check point that way too many Millennials are having to lease apartments because they cannot even begin to consider owning a 3,000 square foot home with a starting price of $850,000.

Last commentary in this post is that there are a bunch of companies that are just as blind as many of the broadcast networks.

One of the companies that I think is tanking quickly is Dominos Pizza.

Not only do Millennials think that Pizza is not healthy, good-for-me, make-me-fit-and-good-looking food, it’s a product that is way too Boomer and Gen X rooted.

They say that docs can quickly diagnose a patient based on a couple easy indicators of the likely condition affecting the patient.

One of those Blinding Glimpses of the Obvious with a fast food restaurant is just how diverse the menu becomes.

Dominos spent a lot of money on a set of ads telling the American populace that their brand name was dropping “pizza.” Then came a set of ads in which each ad promoted chicken or sandwiches or pasta dishes.

I think that Millennials totally get it right when they no longer connect with a “friend” or a brand, they quickly click “unfriend” and move-on.

Going back to politics, I think we need to sit back for some great entertainment in the next few months.

I bet that Dominos and Hillary share some common ground. Both are working at hard at taking a brand from the past and modifying it, altering it and re-engineering it when the core base of the brand is in deep, deep trouble.

CEO & Discovery Chief at EXPERIENCE Insight Group, Inc. In the business to discover and craft brand experiences that humans seek out and engage in.