For millennials, grocery shopping is a far cry from stocking up on weekly staples. Studies continue to show that their purchase decisions are driven by their healthy eating habits, budget constraints, technology obsession, and desire for experiential shopping. Just a handful of recent data shows:
The 15-to-35-year-old consumer is hungry for a new way to engage with grocers and retailers. Here are 10 ideas to consider adding to your millennial marketing mix, whether you’re a small, mid-sized, or large grocer. If you’re a shopping center marketing director, you could incorporate these ideas into your existing marketing/digital programs.
- Hold themed food sample days. Build themes around topics that matter to millennials—holidays, seasons, pop culture events, trending ingredients, and eating habits. Think: Kale Day, Gluten-Free Day, and Super Bowl Prep Day.
- Stock more healthy pre-made food options. For millennials who are short on time and healthy cooking prowess, pre-made dishes are a boon. If you’re a shopping center, why not keep of healthy food options that are offered throughout your center.
- Create a recycling program for food packaging. This is for health- and environmentally-conscious millennials. Package pre-made food in recyclable containers that millennials can bring back to the store to deposit in recycling bins.
- Offer complimentary coffee. It’s hard to turn down a free caffeine fix, especially for deal-hungry millennials.
- Host dietitian-led events. ShopRite, Giant, and other grocers have dietitians on staff to lead in-store speaking events, store tours, and weight management programs. Extend dietitians’ reach to digital where they can lead weekly Twitter chats and answer questions on your store Facebook page.
- Join and/or sponsor food-related Twitter chats. Get involved in chats related to healthy food, eating styles, and cooking, such as #FoodChat, #FoodieChats, and #VeganFoodChat.
- Develop content around detox and cleanse programs. Create digital assets covering detox plans and food cleanses to add to your content marketing funnel.
- Provide in-store recipe cards or on your website. If you have a recipe app, state that recipes are also available in your app. Bonus: Sell a branded recipe box where millennials can store the cards they take home.
- Post “Did you know?” signs on shelves. Provide fun, useful, and unusual facts about products, foods, nutrition, and cooking. For instance, did you know cucumbers can erase pen marks on paper?
- Add an in-store juice bar. Again, go healthy by offering fruit and veggie smoothies. Some grocers have these in place, including Nature’s Food Market and Juice Bar and Dean’s Natural Food Market.
How are you planning to adapt to the millennial audience? What new ideas have you tried and what results are you seeing?