If you haven’t heard of collaborative consumption it’s time to brush-up on the concept and integrate the theory into your communication approach. Brands are using this model to gain traction among millennials and use social media to give this consumer base a voice when it comes to the products or services they buy.
Gen Y is the biggest and most educated generation in history. It’s 80 million strong and changing industries to meet their needs. It’s a generation with high expectations about the world in which they live. It’s a generation with influence. In full disclosure, I’m a proud Gen Y’er and I couldn’t agree more with the description of millennials shared today at Chevy’s crowd-sourcing panel. We are a generation full of expectations, but we are also a generation focused on learning, discovering, creating and collaborating.
Chevy shared their “secret sauce” to reaching my generation and marketing to us in the way we want. Joined by representatives from GM, Zipcar and Viacom’s Scratch, the panel explored how collaborative consumption can be used to effectively connect with Gen Y. The case studies explored Chevy’s recent Super Bowl ads and concept cars geared toward this audience. In both instances they created an entry point for millennials to weigh in and shape the final outcome. Tapping into what is relevant for Gen Y garnered Chevy 50 million online views of its Super Bowl ad before it aired.
This collaborative approach transformed what could have been a one-way conversation into a platform that invites Gen Y into the creative process and lets them drive the final outcome. As the panel pointed out, Gen Y is fantastic at receiving and rejecting marketing messages. Brands need to embrace this reality and start working within it rather than challenge it.