In this video, Jackson CMO David Jones discusses experiential marketing and mistake #4 that can kill your experiential marketing program, the mistake of believing that all of your customers look the same.
Mistake #4 that can kill your experiential marketing program is the mistake of believing that all of your customers look the same.
Now, unfortunately, this is a myth that’s propagated primarily by marketers. We like to lump people into these neat demographic groups and pretend that they all look and act and believe the same. We talk about Baby Boomers, and we talk about the way that they’re party-hard career climbers. We talk about Generation X and how this group of people are entrepreneurs and they’re individualistic, and yet they still like to operate on the team. And then, of course, there’s the Millennial generation; the generation that’s nurtured and that’s expected to be treated special. And unlike most of us, they don’t live to work. And so we get these neat, little pockets of demographic research and we begin to believe—if we aren’t careful—that all of our customers look the same.
I saw some research recently on Millennials. Millennials are the largest group – over 85 million Millennials in the United States. And this research said that when they talked to Millennials, only 42% of Millennials actually held the beliefs that are commonly associated with that demographic group. So here we have the largest group of consumers in the United States, 85 million people, and nearly 50 million of them do not believe or do not act the way that the research leads us to believe. So, you’ve really got to understand your target market.
I was with two groups of Millennials not long ago on college campuses doing presentations, and this was shortly after the presidential primary had gone through their state. And I asked how many of them either did vote, or if they would have voted, would have voted for Bernie Sanders. And as we know from the media, all college kids voted for Bernie Sanders, right? Seventy-five college students I talked to in two groups, five of them raised their hand as having voted for Bernie Sanders. So we just can’t always believe the generalizations.
I was at a NASCAR race a couple of weeks ago. You think NASCAR is a fairly solid group of people, in terms of understanding what they’re like. But yet, as I walked around the track, I saw families with young children in the stands. I saw lifelong NASCAR fans camping in the in-field. I saw college kids that were together partying. I saw retired men and women who were together in their multimillion-dollar RVs. I saw corporate executives in the pits and in suites. So there are five very different target audiences, even at a NASCAR race, where everyone is supposed to look and act and believe the same.
So the key, as you look at your experiential marketing program, is not to believe the myth that all of your customers look the same.