Why Millennials Aren't the Unsociable Misanthropes Everyone Says They Are

In fact, millennial entrepreneurs love building communities.

learn more about Jonathan Long

By Jonathan Long

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Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Millennials, the generation born roughly between 1982 and 2004, take a lot of heat from their predecessors, claiming they are spoiled, entitled, selfish, narcissistic and shallow. But, this isn't necessarily the case, as studies show that millennials have more experience working in small businesses or as entrepreneurs than any generation before them, according to USA Today.

Even though they're younger, millennials are more likely to have started a business than baby boomers (born between 1946 and mid-60s) or Gen Xers (mid-60s to 1980) . . . They're in a hurry, wanting to start businesses soon, but they know they need help.

Enter community building, which is helping millennials grow their businesses. Despite millennial mythology, this generation is just as, if not more, interested in community-building than their predecessors -- it's just that their concept of community has shifted, compliments of the Digital Revolution.

Millennials understand the importance of connecting to customers all over the world using the internet and social media -- one of their biggest advantages. Millennial brands are inclusive, appeal to diverse groups of people and implement non-marketing strategies to make their customers feel like they're a part of the action. Let's dive into a few reasons why millennials love building communities.

Related: 11 Successful Kid Entrepreneurs Keeping Their Eyes on the Prize

They are able to create emotional connections through social content.

Wedding dress retailer Azazie understands the power of engagement marketing. The brand's marketing manager, Araceli Vizcaino-S, a millennial herself, notes that through their commitment to building engaged digital communities, their relationships with customers often begins before a customer contacts them.

"We give customers a look at our gowns on our site, but we also use our social media channels to create emotional connections with community-sourced images of real bridal parties," says Vizcaino-S.

The art of creating those emotional connections -- business and brand -- is a hallmark of Millennial marketing, born of the unique desire to reach huge audiences through the power of digital communities.

Related: 25 Kids That Made Millions Before Graduating High School

Quality is prioritized.

Another reason millennials are able to use engagement marketing and community building to drive business is that they do what they say they are going to do and promote quality, high-value products. They truly prioritize quality and value over everything.

Contrary to popular belief, millennials are shockingly non-materialistic. This explains the rise of the share economy, with brands like Uber and Lyft skyrocketing to success with millennials, who are reluctant to make big purchases, like homes and cars.

"Millennials are increasingly minimalist, recognizing the importance of providing only the best goods and services to their customers. More than ever before, this generation of entrepreneurs is focused on customer satisfaction and offering quality products above fancy marketing strategies designed to make the sale at any cost," says Chris Moberg, President of Slumber Search.

Related: 20 Business Ideas for Stay-at-Home Parents

They are able to build strong community foundations by leveraging personal connections.

Millennial entrepreneurs care about their customers -- a lot. Part of the reason for this connection to their audience is due to the fact that they are likely to utilize their personal connections as a catalyst for business success.

According to Kip Skibicki, founder of Starchild Management and Top Notch Threads, "There are many ways to grow your business, but I strongly suggest taking full advantage of your personal connections. Not only will you find it easy to talk to these people, but you'll also find that they're the most receptive to helping you out." millennials know who their supporters are, and they aren't afraid to ask for help from those people.

Final thoughts.

Millennial entrepreneurs are more intensely connected to their communities than ever before, and they are already transforming the landscape of small and independently owned business around the world through community-building. It will only become stronger when combined with the insights and strategies of past generations.
Jonathan Long

Founder, Uber Brands

Jonathan Long is the founder of Uber Brands, a brand-development agency focusing on ecommerce.

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