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Whether you call them Generation Y, echo boomers, or some other random name, there is no denying the powerful market that is the millennial generation. With millennials traveling more than any other generation, it’s no surprise that interest in attracting this age group is rising among hospitality marketers.

Take it from this millennial who is working at a digital marketing agency made up of nearly 75 percent millennials: Alluring my age group isn’t difficult IF you remember these few things: 

Keep your eyes on the target

The most important part of attracting millennial travelers is to not generalize them. We’re not all looking for independent coffee shops or popular thrift stores — those are stereotypes. Millennials have varied interests and passions, so we don’t like to be categorized into one box. A great example is Airbnb’s Live There campaign. The company created videos that feature different locations and travelers, highlighting activities that a millennial traveler could partake in while staying in Paris, Tokyo, and Los Angeles.

While nice accommodations are important, impressive hotels can be found anywhere. Therefore, hotels are usually not the reason a traveler leaves the house for an extended period of time.

Marketers should shine a spotlight on how their brand can be a part of the journey, not the destination.

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Users over brands

Chances are, you’re already aware that a personal recommendation from a friend can influence purchases. What you probably didn’t know is 84% of millennials are also influenced by user-generated content. This is where we really stand out from other generations. Most of us haven’t had years to build up brand loyalty, so depending on a signature logo to validate your property’s service and amenities is simply not enough. And, do we really want to visit those brands that our parents pledge their allegiance to?

Famous for producing the #followmeto photos, Muradosmann partners with various brands to create unique user-generated content for them. From resorts to clothing lines, the team has produced content that subtly exposes users to different products without bombarding them with a call to action. Unlike sponsored posts from celebrities, Muradosmann’s content feels natural and still fits into a newsfeed.

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From advertising your hotel’s hashtag and setting up Instagram photo booths to utilizing Snapchat’s On-Demand Geofilters and rewarding guests for checking in on Facebook, there are plenty of ways to encourage travelers to create user-generated content throughout their stay. 

Create a story worth telling 

It’s no surprise that millennials spend a large majority of their time on the Internet. We’re exposed to tons of content, so we’ve developed a pretty solid way to filter what is good and what is bad. Good content situates a brand as an accessory and facilitator to the millennials’ story. Bad content, well, it forces a brand into the story and becomes the main focus.

Hostelworld launched its Meet the World campaign, and it is a great example of storytelling. The video features content that appeals to the specific experience of a few young travelers. In fact, a lot of the content on YouTube is focused on the stories that can be had outside of the hostel.

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Our generation wants to be a part of a story, and the last thing we’re thinking is: “Isn’t it great how INSERT HOTEL NAME HERE helped us? I’m glad we’re staying with them.” Tell your audience an authentic story that motivates them to write one of their own. Now, that’s the ticket!

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