My Ad Consumption Habits

“How to advertise to millennials” seems to be a hot topic in the marketing world right now. NPR’s New Boom series asks: “How should brands and advertisers go about reaching millennials if they’re so powerful, but also so different, than generations before them?” While I can’t speak for all millennials, I can give you insight into how to best advertise to myself: a 21 year old female college student who spends an excessive amount of time on her iPhone, laptop, and in her car.

Best ways to advertise to me (in order of best to next best):

1) Mobile

I have my phone on me 24/7. I’m constantly checking Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat. So if you want me to see your ad, you should put your content on one of these social media platforms. Also, the best type of content is video content (as we discussed last class). Videos are more entertaining and visually stimulating—they will keep my attention better than any other type of ad.

2) Video Streaming Services

Thankfully Netflix doesn’t play ads throughout TV shows/movies, but Hulu and HBO Go do. I can’t watch Modern Family or Game of Thrones (T-minus 15 minutes until the season 5 premiere!) without being interrupted by multiple ads. This isn’t my ideal viewing experience, but it’s the only way I can watch the shows because I don’t have cable. The nice part about Hulu’s ads is that it asks you “does this ad pertain to you?” after viewing it, so you have more control over the type of ads you’re shown.

3) YouTube Commercials

I’m obsessed with YouTube and watch an unhealthy amount of music videos, stand up comedy acts, and late night talk show clips. That means I see a lot of YouTube ads too. For me personally, YouTube is an extremely good platform for ads, especially because I will most likely watch your ad more than once in a short span of time. I’m also the type of person that doesn’t click “skip add”—if an ad intrigues me enough I’ll watch the whole thing.

4) Billboards

I have made the 9 hour drive to and from Chapel Hill and Nashville more times than I can count on two hands. The drive is loooong and boring. At least billboards are there to keep me entertained, informed, and direct me to the nearest Chick-fil-a.


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