Point of view: The 'value' of Millennials

Megan Averell

'Relevance' was one of the most overused words at Cannes Lions this year. In many instances, it was aimed squarely at the ever-elusive Millennial – a segment that the marketing community, a decade after it replaced Generation Y as the desirable target group, is still struggling to figure out.

This figuring out has often stopped at surface-level platitudes. For instance, 'Millennials like music' or 'Millennials want customisation'. And, likewise, much of the advertising directed towards Millennials merely scrapes the surface. Ads might attempt to appeal by showing young people enjoying the product, or by displaying a mutual enjoyment of passions, or by locking up the favourite celebrity, song, or meme of the moment.

But deploying actors of the same age, showing adjacency to passions, or borrowing interest from popular culture does not make for real relevance. Not for marketing-wise Millennials, who have seen it all and never take anything at face value.