According to experts, Millennials’ giving habits are unique, when compared to their older counterparts. Instant access to information and their low desire to affiliate with organizations influence their engagement with philanthropic groups. Their independence and large access to information leads them to be very particular about what or whom they wish to be associated with.
Here are 4 ways in which Millennials’ giving is different than other generation, and how your organization can attract their support:
- Millennials experience a new social contract.
Less and less Millennials find themselves committing to organizations, or things like local churches. This is unlike older generations. The “new social contract” states that modern-day careers are less stable, thus employers and employees are less loyal. People who are born in the 1980’s and 1990’s are not building life-long career and organizational relationships like their parents and grandparents. This instability makes them less likely to be committed to a philanthropic organization.
- New, widespread technology use gives Millennials an opportunity to more thoroughly assess an organization’s work and visions.
With countless, mobile technologies, Millennials have access to a plethora of information. This allows them the ability to assess organizations more than any other generation has before. Although they still hold the desire to work together toward change, they have new tools to essentially pick apart organizations.
- Millennials focus on values.
Experts are finding that Millennials focus on values when choosing an organization or group they desire to be affiliated with. The technology they have access to allows them to research certain organizations’ values. They are highly likely to pick those whose policies and visions align with their values.
- Millennial peer networks are strongly connected.
Because Millennials are experiencing the new social contract and less commitment in their careers, their peer networks are much more valued and influential. The stability in their peer relationships leads to higher influences on decisions about things like philanthropic engagement. Peer networks are also more close-knit because of their accessibility to one another through technology and the ability to stay in contact at all times.
~Based on these facts, many organizations may simply need to come up with a business plan geared specifically toward Millennials. Because not entire audiences are made up of Millennials, it is important to not get caught up in gaining their support. However, it is smart to shift certain marketing plans and outreach with Millennial attitudes about giving and volunteering. Accommodation is key!
About the author: Hannah is a junior in the University of Iowa School of Journalism and Mass Communication. She hopes to one day do fashion public relations.