Small and midsized businesses (SMBs) are the backbone of the American economy.

Small businesses alone are responsible for 54 percent of all sales in the US and are the biggest creators of employment opportunities since 1970.

Even though these businesses seem to be doing well on paper, the cold truth is there are millions of business owners struggling behind the scenes.

Some of the biggest challenges facing entrepreneurs today include accessing funds to grow their businesses and finding innovative ways to attract and retain new customers.

In this post, we’re sharing a couple of reasons why we believe millennials are the key to SMB solutions and SMB marketing.

Let’s get into it!

Millennials Are America’s Largest Population

Did you know millennials are now the largest living generation?

As of 2015, the U.S. Census Bureau reports there were over 83 million millennials compared to 75.4 million baby boomers!

What do these numbers mean for your business?

Understanding how the various generations stack up against each other can shape your product strategy.

For instance, if you want to create a product that will gross the highest number of sales, you stand a better chance of succeeding if you can design your products with millennials in mind.

Just look at social networking companies such as Facebook, Snapchat, and Twitter.

There’s no doubt the millions of millennials who use the internet every day largely contributed the growth of these companies from small enterprises to large corporations.

Millennials Are the Driving Force Behind Marketing Trends

Another reason why millennials are the key to SMB solutions and SMB marketing is their ability to influence marketing trends.

As a business owner or marketer, you must know what works for your target audience and adapt your strategy accordingly.

Since millennials have the highest purchasing power of all generations, a change in their preferences shakes the marketing industry.

Here is a quick question for you.

Why is digital marketing becoming more powerful than traditional marketing?

The answer is simple: millennials are hooked to their smartphones, tablets, and computers more than they’re hooked to television and print media.

Therefore, to effectively reach millennials SMBs (and even large firms) must focus their marketing efforts on digital platforms.

And by the way, this is not the only marketing trend millennials are changing.

Desktop browsing has always been the way people access the internet. As a result, SMBs adopted a desktop-first digital marketing strategy.

But in 2015 the game changed. The vast majority of millennials switched to smartphones as their preferred device for accessing the web. This prompted SMB marketers to switch from desktop marketing to mobile marketing!

If we dig deeper into the consumption habits of millennials, we will find little behaviors that are shaping how marketers deploy their marketing strategies.

For instance, more and more millennials are falling in love with videos. In 2016, a whopping 78 million millennials (92 percent) were watching video content on their mobile devices on a monthly basis.

The result? 72 percent of marketers are planning to increase their spending on digital marketing video in 2017!

In many ways, millennials are the driving force behind marketing trends. If you want to keep your sales high, then you must move along with their changing preferences.

Millennials Influence Business Branding

Gone are the days when the main goal of branding was to develop a unique visual identity

Today, millennials are changing how business owners approach branding.

You see, millennials don’t shop from just any business. Many of them prefer brands that have a personality and values.

This has forced to SMB owners to think beyond choosing company colors, designing a logo and crafting a tagline or slogan. You must also develop a mission statement that communicates what your business stands for.

If your brand’s personality and values resonate well with millennials, it’s highly likely they will come knocking on your business door.

Beyond building a brand that millennials can shop from, you must build a brand that millennials can work for!

By 2020, millennials will constitute 46 percent of the American labor force. The vast majority are highly educated and want to keep improving their professional skills. In short, they are the best an employer can get.

But there’s one problem.

Millennials are very choosy about who they work for. They look at the brand reputation of a company and its workplace culture before accepting an employment offer.

If you don’t build a strong brand around your business, bringing talented millennials on board will be a challenge.

Millennials as SMB Solutions Providers

We’ve discussed millennials as consumers and employees, now let’s switch gears to millennials as business owners.

Millennials are aggressive entrepreneurs.

While boomers were starting their first businesses at an average age of 35, millennials are doing the same at just 27.

How is this a good thing for existing SMBs? Don’t more businesses in the market mean more competition for customers?

Sure, competition will get stiffer as more millennials start their own outfits, but more companies will benefit from various SMB solutions offered by millennial-owned firms

Take an example of an internet company founded and led by millennials vs. a similar company headed by generation Xers or even boomers. Which among the two will you hire to lead your digital marketing efforts?

Your answer is as good as mine. Who’s better placed to market and sell to a millennial than another millennial?

Final Thoughts on Millennials Being the Key to SMB Solutions and SMB Marketing

Millennials are a powerful and influential gang. They have the numbers and the money, and with money comes purchasing power.

Since they are the biggest generation of customers, you have no option but to offer products and services that satisfy their needs.

You must also craft a marketing strategy that can effectively reach millennials and win them over. This can be a difficult task to do, especially when you lack up-to-date information on the changing consumption behavior of millennials.

This is why you should hire a digital agency to develop and implement an online marketing strategy that can place your business or products on the screens of millions of millennials.