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We’ll go ahead and kick this off by saying, this is not a slam piece about millennials. We like them, we employ them, we admire them, we think we should stop talking about them like they are some rare species that is never in the room.
Late last year we were contracted to help bring to life data that was gathered during a study specifically targeting millennials. Why the study? The Adirondacks, like many destinations, have had a great run with an amazing audience that is now aging. Looking ahead, who replaces that audience? Is it Millennials, and if so, what do they want? Does it differ from what’s worked in the past. Schireson Associates conducted focus groups, doing the daring work of actually talking to millennials, rather than disparaging them and making broad generalizations. Tuns out millennials do have certain preferences that can be articulated, but as is the case with most sentient beings, they also contradict one another and don’t all fit into one tidy, little box.
Working with The W!ld Center, we are putting together an interpretation of the data long with graphic elements and other items that can be used by people and organizations that decide that yes, they would like to entertain the idea of tailoring their message and preparing their venue or service to be something that people born between the early eighties and 2000s. The project has made those of us who aren’t millennials feel a little old, but the reality is that making things look cool* gets boring, striving to make things that are relevant, of value, and cool, that’s where the meat is.
Millennials: They’re people! They love things! And, with the right invitation and welcome, they may love the Adirondacks too!
*Cool isn’t even cool anymore. It’s not on fleek. It’s a word we probably can’t even say.