Buzzword: Millennials

If you follow international meeting media, you might have stumbled upon a lot of articles about the wants and needs of millennials and how we can accommodate these. So, this week I have decided to take a further look into what these millennials are all about.

According to Wikipedia there is no one way to characterize the millennials, but it seems that most experts agree that they were born between the early 1980s and the mid-1990s. This matches the reason why many media all of a sudden have decided to focus on this group: Some of them are fairly new to the work life and as a result our events.

How do we make millennials feel comfortable at our events?

First of all, we have to make relevant and exciting content at our conferences. Millennials are (still) looking for career development opportunities, which means that new knowledge and lots of networking opportunities for them to interact with possible employers etc.

Also notice that these young people would prefer engaging in fantastic experiences (a back-stage tour, involving/interactive group work, or helping out a charity…to name a few) over goodie bags. To them it is more important to try out new things that they can share on social media than get a gift (they already have the latest iPhone, so goodie bag items are not that interesting!), so remember to make your event insta-worthy :o)

Exploit the FOMO

On the other hand, you can use their ‘Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO)’ to draw attention to your event. Make it visible on social media and everywhere else this target group is present and describe it in a way that makes them not want to miss your event. If it attracts one millennial, there is a good chance more will follow.

However, remember to give these youngsters what they want, not what you would like them to want (for more inspiration on this, read the blogpost “5 tips to being the perfect host at your next event”). And if you are not one of them, consider having one of these millennials in the conference’s planning group or advisory board – that is another thing they love: Being listened to.

How do you take millennials into account when you plan your conferences?

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