Decoding the Millennial Consumers in India

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"I wish there was no longer a "we v/s us' mentality between the company and the consumer."

"Everyone wants to know our secrets. But we don't want to be marketed to, pigeonholed and pinned down."

Anonymous millenials

Representing close to one-half of the world's population, the millennial consumers are the most scrutinized generation in today day and age. Businesses are constantly evolving, accommodating and serving this round-the-clock demanding workforce that functions 52 hours a week. As quoted by the TIME magazine, the "ME ME ME generation", also known as the "millennials", is a new breed of quality conscious consumers who isn't convinced by traditional mass marketing strategies and product-based advertisements.

Who are these millennials?

The Millennials are not only the last generation of the 20th century, but also the century's very own first digital cohorts, rolled-into-one. In other words, they are born between the eighties and early 2000's and fall somewhere between the generation X and generation Z. Often misunderstood for pursuing seemingly elusive endeavors, this generation possesses the acumen, skill, and innovation for becoming the potential leaders of tomorrow. Love them or hate them, but you can't ignore them. India's millennial consumers have a natural proclivity to searching information and are not satiated with the mere of enlightenment; they value the journey of discovering, experiencing and the pride associated with it.

Let's unravel some interesting facts about the millennial audience that is taking the world by storm:

1) Personalization is the key: Millennial consumers dare to go beyond the functional aspect of the products; they delve deeper into the aesthetic aspects like identity, eminence, and patronage associated with the product. Their constant craving for personalized goods and services has compelled businesses to amend their production and marketing strategies.

2) Online v/s store shopping: The Indian millennial consumers rely on various shopping apps and online reviews before making a purchase. However, it would not be fair to presume that millennial consumers are merely online shoppers. They also love going to the mall and indulging in shopping at stores for just about anything; clothes, accessories, electronics, home essentials. But they also check out for deals, insights, customer reviews, and compare prices before making the final choice. In a study conducted by Accenture, showed that 68% of all millennials insisted on having a seamless shopping experience regardless of the medium.

3) Value money, but still poor: Although young, most millennials enter adulthood with significant financial roadblocks. With college loan EMI's to be paid off the moment they get their first jobs, millennials are already neck-deep in debts. This is one of the major reasons why they delay buying a house, getting married, or having children. In fact, many remain pretty comfortable staying with their parents.

4) Brand loyalty is important: The Indian millennial consumers attach equal importance to brand attitude and product specifications. About 60% of the Indian millennial consumers look out for brands they can associate with. Believers in collective individualism, the Indian millennial consumers only crave for brands that will boost their social status and make them stand out in the crowd.

5) Generation I: Indian millennial consumers do not mimic their older generations when it comes to taking important decisions such as voting. Yet, most millennials like to stay connected to their traditions such as celebrating Indian festivals and rituals with great fervor.

Indian millennial consumers are becoming increasingly individualistic in their purchase habits in a myriad ways. The three important categories that are touted to achieve maximum financial boost are beauty, health, and fashion. For millennials, beauty is not confined to the face, but also encompasses the body in a holistic manner. Health now means much more than having a well-toned body. They are keen to look modish without being flippant or outlandish.

Indian millennials constitute about one-fifth of the world's youth population. Apart from opening up brand opportunities, comprehending the mindset and requirements of young millennial consumers will lead to a better tomorrow. A paradigm shift from family purchases to individualistic indulgent shopping over the past 10 years indicates that Indian consumer focus on categories guaranteeing personal fulfillment is on the rise.