People of the millennial generation range from their teens to their early 30s. They are “digital natives” that are accustomed to having access to people and information at their fingertips. Whether you are looking to attract or retain them, the question is: how do we communicate most effectively with them?
Clear and Relevant
Millennials tend to prefer digital communication—texts, emails and social media—over face-to-face meetings or phone calls. When communicating with Millennials, strive to be clear and concise. They are accustomed to sifting through large amounts of information to find what is relevant to them. Rather than trying to make everything seem relevant, just make it clear which things actually are relevant. As a Millennial congregant, I’m not particularly interested about when the seniors group is meeting next and will appreciate a clear article title so I can save time by skipping over that article.
Millennials are constantly being bombarded with information. To increase the likelihood that your web and email content actually gets read, include images, bolded headings and bullet points so that the content can be visually scanned for relevance. If you are a Facebook user, you may be familiar with the “See More” link. Utilizing this strategy allows you to feature more topics in less space and allows interested parties to get more information without slowing down everyone else. Emails and most website pages should be no more than one page long—if you have to hit the Page Down button more than once to get to the bottom, it is too long.
On social media, people share content that inspires them. If you are looking to engage and attract Millennials, you need to provide digital content that is inspiring and has value. If your content helps someone get through their day, they are more likely to check out your spiritual community. More often than not, new people will research your ministry online before they will think about walking through the doors. The content on the community’s Facebook page and website needs to be current, valuable and inspiring.
Millennials seek out authentic relationships. Facilitating meaningful connections between community members and adjusting your communications for a digital world will help retain Millennials and will strengthen your community as a whole.