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Marketing Your Event to Millennials

For the past few decades the Baby Boomers have been on the top of the heap and wielded the largest influence when it comes to marketing value. These folks are mostly retired with plenty of free time and disposable income. They are still a force to be reckoned with, but the Millennials now outnumber the silver-haired foxes and comprise the largest demographic in the United States.

Marketing Your Event to Millennials

Whether you are starting a brand new event or are running one that has been around since the “jogging” craze started in the 1970’s, these insights and tips will get you on-track to make your event attractive and enticing to these up-and-coming whippersnappers eating their avocado toast while wearing their skinny jeans.  We must be getting old here at RaceDirector, because that sounded a bit like our old man.

Millennials have been defined as a cohort group of people who were born between 1982 and 2004.  We are talking about ages today of 13 to 33 years old.  Now it may seem that your average teenager may not have much in common with a 30 year-old, but we could start with the fact that they both live at home with their parents and spend most of their time playing video games.  Ok, we got our one shot at Millennials out of the way and it did not come until the third paragraph.  In all seriousness, make fun of and ignore the Millennials at your event’s peril.  

This generation is extremely tech savvy and and social media is the sandbox they have grown up playing in their entire lives.  Digital marketing strategies are the most effective means of catching their attention and creating engagement.  The good news is that if you are successful in gaining their business and support, they will “share” and “like” and “hashtag” your event to their entire gaggle of followers and friends and help make your event THE place to be.

Facebook:  2 billion people are now on Facebook.  Your mom is even on Facebook now!  Utilizing Facebook(FB) to reach the millennials as well as the rest of the internet-connected world must be a part of your marketing strategy.  Here are a few quick wins and fundamentals to get you moving in the right direction.

  • Create a FB page for your event.  If you have more than one event you can make it the name of your race or event company.  

  • Create an “event” page for the date of your race with all the details and some photos.

  • Post about your event early and often.  Drip details about your event to keep people engaged and excited.  EX:  Post a pic of your race shirt when they come in.

  • Use a picture in every post.  Plain text posts with no images are often ignored.

  • Go “Live” or post a video.  This is even more engaging than just a picture.

  • Build a targeted FB ad campaign.  Because of the ability to get granular with the demographics and geography, you can get a lot of bang for your buck.

Related:  How to use Facebook Live to Promote Your Event

Instagram:  Many millennials have begun to spend less time on Facebook and have made Instagram their go-to social media site.  Facebook is cool with that since they own Instagram.

  • Follow the same rules of engagement as with FB, but also use a hashtag and encourage people to use it themselves and post their own pictures of the event on race day.

  • Use high quality images and carefully curate the images you share to tell your story and create excitement for your event.

  • Explore trending hashtags that are relative to your event and attach them to your post to try and reach a bigger audience.

  • Identify local influencers who have large followings and get them to help you get the word out about your event.  

Twitter:  140 characters does not seem like enough to get your message out.  SAD!  

  • Include images in your tweets.  They help your message stand out in the news feed.

  • Include links to your own website as well as FB and Instagram posts.  Distribute all your content across all the social media channels you are using.

  • Do not forget the all important hashtag.  #superimportant

Related:  Social Media and Sharing Made Simple

So there you have it, a basic strategy for connecting with Millennials to help get your event on their radar.  Once you start to dig into this you will see the types of posts and images that resonate the most with the youth and learn how to craft yours using the language they speak.  If all else fails you can get your 8th grader to run your social media campaigns or hire the kid who cuts your lawn to do it for you.  

See for yourself how RaceDirector can help you save money on race registration fees while maximizing your time with robust race management features.

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