Millennials are now a larger audience, and arguably more profitable audience for restaurant marketers, than even Baby Boomers. As a result, restaurant marketing strategies and restaurant marketing budgets are being revamped to win the younger generation. According to Media Awareness Network (MNet), the advertisement industry’s spending on children has exploded in the past decade, increasing from a mere $100 million in 1990 to more than $2 billion in 2000 (okay, working on getting some updated figures, of course, but at least this one is illustrative of the trend which has been building for years and now reached a tipping point).
Marketing to Kids
Millennials often have higher frequency and be dubbed “heavy users” particularly for QSR’s and fast casual restaurant concepts. They have disposable income that is undeniable, and like the generation before them, continue the trend of spending higher percentages of their food dollar in restaurants than grocery stores. This audience can’t be overlooked. The approaches to reach them involve considering new approaches to everything from menu recipes and names, to digital marketing over traditional advertising techniques, to location strategy, and so much more.
The new generation thinks, talks, acts, behaves and generally communicates much different than those that preceded them. Sure, one could say it has always been that way. What’s different in this case though is that they were born after the invention of the Internet and cellular phone. This is the first generation of “digital natives”. The older surviving generations are “digital immigrants”. The rules of communication have fundamentally changed. It is very intriguing to me that the majority of the marketing budgets are controlled by digital immigrants, but – for many restaurant concepts – the majority of their employees and customers are digital natives. This fundamental difference in how both were raised to communicate is often a cause in some failed restaurant marketing efforts, but it is also the source of great opportunity for restaurant marketers that focus on this emerging audience.
We pulled together some good stats that can help you build an internal case for shifting more of your restaurant marketing budget toward digital marketing in general, and kids marketing in specific.
Click here to read the full version of Restaurant Industry Special Report: Marketing to Kids