How to Sell to Generation Y

Consider for one moment whether you’ve ever made a purchase based on the “image” or “look” of that product rather than the value. Perhaps you’ve purchased the latest I-Phone without understanding exactly what has changed or without actually needing a new phone. This is the reality of today’s marketplace. Image pre-determines value.

You only need to look around you to realise that people are now making choices largely based on the reputation of that brand or the visual look of the product over the value. The change is being driven by Generation Y and it’s part of a wider fundamental shift in the way purchases are being made. If you’re in business – you need to know how to sell to Generation Y.

Generation Y are the largest growing marketplace on the planet and are estimated to spend one trillion dollars this year alone globally. Technology is the key driver behind this dramatic change in buying behaviour – you’re now selling to the first generation who will make large purchasing decisions such as a car without ever seeing it. We’re buying more and more online, which means you’re traditional sales skills may not be all that transferable in today’s world.

Here are my top 3 tips for selling to Generation Y:

1. Make It Visual

Great graphic design has never been so important. Generation Y are seeking instant gratification which can only be delivered through effective visuals, not lengthy texts or long phone calls.

Video marketing is the most effective method of marketing for Generation Y, because it’s visual and it’s instant. Make sure your sales process involves as much visual engagement as possible; from the marketing right through to closing the deal. Visual. Visual. Visual.

2. Communicate Authentically

Cold calling a Generation Y prospect is the least effective way to make a sale. It’s critical that you communicate in ways that Generation Y trust and are familiar with. How many sites do you visit now that have a live chat on the homepage? You can guarantee that a Generation Y prospect will choose a competitor over you if they have more accessible communication such as social media and live chat.

We all make buying decisions based on emotion so Generation Y need to be able to connect with the people behind the business. Social media is an incredible opportunity to present your authentic and transparent brand to the marketplace. Capture Generation Y’s attention by being a bit different and quirky. Even if you charge a premium price for products, if a Gen Y’er can resonate with the brand they’re buying from they will prioritise that over price.

Social media has torn down the barrier between consumer and company. You can no longer hide those bad reviews or dissatisfied customers. Generation Y will judge you based on the way you handle those reviews, so communicate like a human not a corporation.

3. Speed! Speed! Speed! 

In a world where information has never been more accessible, nothing frustrates Generation Y more than not being able to get the right information online. If the product doesn’t seem easily accessible, it’s an instant red flag for Generation Y and they’re likely to find a competitor who has a quicker sales process.

Don’t send boring auto-responders to let them know we’ve “received your email and will endeavour to respond within 3 working days”. Ensure that your sales process is smooth, transparent and fast.

The quicker you make the sale happen and deliver the product – the sooner Generation Y can get on with referring their friends to your business.

Generation Y are the generation most likely to review your business online. Building an efficient sales process and using technology to communicate will not only drive more sales to your business but increase your referrals as well.

In 2017 Generation Y will outspend Baby Boomers for the first time. Is your business ready?