Who Do Millennials Trust?

October 23, 2013
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It’s one of the most daunting tasks in human existence, something we all avoid but know we must do eventually, get back to or manipulate to make seem far worse… living a healthy lifestyle. From the next celebrity fab diet to the local health food store touting the new miracle drug for weight loss, living a healthy lifestyle seems to be the trendy thing to do but how does the next generation filter through all of the hype to truly get the information they need to maintain a healthy lifestyle from credible sources? Through blogger outreach.

See the food, be the food

Millennials are savvy when it comes to marketing, we don’t trust the television advertisement touting the “miracle diet food,” we’ve seen it, tried it, lost it and gained it all back.  You know what we do trust though? We trust our friends, family and followers, who are just like us, for the best recommendations to make that cauliflower mash actually taste like mashed potatoes. Visual sites like Pinterest and Chef This Up give us a clear picture of someone else who made the recipe and it worked for them, why can’t it work for us?

My menu planning every week, like many millennials, revolves around what I have previously pinned onto my healthier eating or foodie Pinterest boards.  From dinners to snacks to desserts I now have the ability to see on my phone all of the ingredients I need while shopping and exactly how it should look while I am cooking.  There is no pen and paper needed or a questionable staged picture in a cookbook giving me unrealistic hope of my casserole actually turning out like that, because whose really does?

Anything you are looking for you can find on Pinterest; need a healthier pizza recipe? Just do a quick search and you will magically see everything from a healthy meat lovers pizza to a gluten free spaghetti squash crust. These photos aren’t staged or photographed by professional photographers in a studio, they are (mostly) made by real at-home cooks, like me, who just want to live healthier lives and maybe eat that last bit of chocolate for dessert without feeling as guilty. Savvy brands who are looking to reach this millennial consumer need to not only utilize sites such as Pinterest to show off their own recipes but they need to especially cultivate that user generated content that was created by existing advocates of their brand. According to a recent study by Black Pearl Intelligence, user generated content on company websites influences more than 80 percent of millennial purchases. Millennials will reward brands who enable and generate this content if it is authentic and relevant, not just staged, paid for or a recopy of their own recipes. This has to be truly user generated and replicable to the everyday consumer.

Constant Connectivity = Required Transparency

Millennials are constantly connected, in fact 50 percent of them would give up their sense of smell before giving up their access to technology! This constant connectedness means that they can (and will) fact check any of the brands they are interested in, especially when it comes to nutrition labels and claims like “organic” and “gluten free.” Food companies must be completely transparent in sharing all of the information about their product, good and bad, because if you don’t millennials will find out very quickly and expose you. Milllennials are loyal to the brands who share the truth with them and will have an honest conversation about their product or make health information readily available. Be credible, be a resource and be that shining example that others wish to follow because millennials will appreciate that and in turn remain loyal to your brand.

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