Super-social millennials force rethink of the 4PS

Do you enable your Millennial audience to expand their professional networks?

The generation we know as the Millennials are super-social, super-connected and super-sensitive to experiences. More than any previous generation they crave new experiences, eagerly anticipating and seeking out the next communal, social phenomenon. And most importantly for business, they quickly evaluate experiences with simple, slick responses that will discard or embrace your brand in a blink.

In essence, Millennials look for experiences that offer four things. Let’s call them the ‘4Ps’: People, Places, Positivity and Perspective.

People: It’s all about network expansion

In terms of people, the Millennials will take any chance to expand their network, whether social, academic or business oriented. They are ultimately confident in these quests for connectivity. They understand that new rules apply in the game of hook-ups. We’re not talking dating sites, but sites that encourage professional contact like LinkedIn. Never before has business had such easy exposure to so many prospective customers, clients, collaborators and commentators. The question is, can you put your brand at the heart of it?

Places – Right place, right now

Millennials want cool, unique experiences, but they want them in cool, unique places too. If you organise an event, a happening or a pop-up, make you sure you consider the photogenic qualities of the location. Because the currency of the selfie is king. And so your location must deliver unique, show-stopping selfie moments too.

Positivity – It’s payback time

The Millennials want to give back, as well as take. Doing good, thinking of others, making a contribution to the wider world is a matter of principle. The selfish, self-centred days of Generation X are behind us. The Millennials identify and prioritise their moral obligations like the children of the 80s curated their designer wardrobes. Conscience and moral responsibility are no longer dirty worlds. They’re buzzwords. So allow some time in your experience to confront issues that are off agenda, but do good for wider society.

Perspective – Help broaden their outlook

In this sense we mean personal and skills development. Put simply, the Millennials seek out experiences that enhance their perspective through the development of skills. Right now there is an unprecedented focus on exam results. University is a statutory requirement. Second degrees are the norm, not the exception. So there has to be another way of standing out from the crowd. If your brand can offer them a new perspective, whether focused on business, society or pleasure, then you’ll get their full attention, for sure.


Andrew Reid, Director Corporate Strategy at Shelton Fleming, a creative agency that produces live events which transform how you see the wider-world, business and brands. We do this by designing intelligent, personalized experiences for global brands.

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