Growing up with the world at their fingertips, young adults expect more from millennial brands. These days, companies need to show that they add real value and make a difference to their communities.
Even if your company doesn’t have an obvious CSR angle, it’s important that you explore different ways that you can lend a helping hand in the world.
Here are 5 businesses that are making a difference, and learning how to operate in today’s increasingly transparent and demanding commercial world.
What Matters To Millennials?
Today’s generation of digital natives are the first to have grown up with technology. This has made them more connected to (and more demanding of) brands they interact with.
It’s not enough for brands to just offer the right product at the right price. Instead, millennials are demanding something a bit more meaningful. Brands must also be authentic, transparent, ethical, and have strong values.
Launched in 2009, Kickstarter is an American public-benefit corporation based in New York. It’s not just a business: Kickstarter is a huge brand, and has played a pivotal role in the wider emergence of global crowdfunding.
Kickstarter’s mission is to “help bring creative projects to life”. By creating a user-friendly platform enabling individuals and organizations to set up crowd-funded campaigns to launch their own creative projects, Kickstarter is changing lives. It has a massive impact on communities around the world, helping bring together individuals passionate about creative causes.
Crowdfunding has only really gone mainstream in the past decade, with millennials being the early adopters and pioneers of this community-based approach. Its values-based system resonates with everything this generation stands for.
It’s widely referenced that today’s generation of young people value experiences over things — and travel has become synonymous with today’s restless youngsters.
One of the most popular ways to travel is to house and city hop using Airbnb (which has now been around for nearly ten years since its initial launch in 2008). Airbnb represents the pinnacle of the new digital sharing economy, near the top of the list of millennials’ favorite brands.
Again, bringing real value to its community is at the core of Airbnb’s business model. By creating a platform that is accessible both online and via its apps, Airbnb has brought tangible benefits to people who wouldn’t have been able to raise funds via house sharing before.
Acting as a matchmaker between users looking for accommodation and individuals with empty rooms, Airbnb doesn’t just provide income opportunities to its hosts. It’s the quirky travel experiences and human-to-human contact which are at the heart of this much-revered brand.
Instagram is almost synonymous with millennials, but it’s often been cast in a rather negative light — as a place where vanity, body-shaming, and consumerism thrive.
But it cannot be denied that Instagram is also a powerful place for encounters, community causes, and entrepreneurs sharing their stories. It’s seen many viral posts and stories celebrating the lives, loves, and triumphs of today’s generation.
40% of millennial women tell brands that Instagram is the best way to reach them — and Instagram is doing its best to do positive things with its impressive reach.
Instagram Together is a testament to how the social media platform is seeking to encourage the discussion and dissemination of worthy causes and features. Rather than just sitting back and letting things happen, Instagram is taking an active role when it comes to creating a community that’s founded on ethical principles.
In order for a social network to thrive, community building and management need to be high up on the agenda. It’s also essential that profits and revenue are invested back into community causes, and that advertising doesn’t take over as the sole reasons for existence.
Mahabis are making slippers cool. And not only slippers, but durable clothing & design, and positive cross-border relations too.
Their company ethos is all about providing great fashion that’s made with passion and care. The collaborative and open nature of the brand (as well as their gorgeous insta feed), makes them the ideal millennial brand:
Their pared-back aesthetic is replicated in their ‘build it yourself’ Shopify store that’s refreshingly simple.
A great testament to how people can achieve more when they come together over something.
My Green World
This is an inspiring brand that combines conservation, travel, education, and technology into one cool and comprehensive package.
Founded just five years ago, this company’s mission is all about making conservation and animal education fun, profitable, and engaging. They are engaged in creating a long-lasting sustainable and durable community, rather than falling into ecotourism traps. Read more about their story below and on their website.
Millennial Brands Making An Impact
Today’s millennials don’t just have the world at their fingertips, they have the power to change it too. And they expect brands to also harness their own powers for good. Whether a brand offers strong values, or an innovative platform for community change — it’s all about adding value, not just making a profit.