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5 charts that show how to (and why you should) reach millennials online

Scroll through TikTok and you’ll see young users explaining why acting millennial online is “cringe,” or embarrassing. But millennials are still the biggest buyers on social media. Millennials are looking for need-to-have products and trustworthy info within social media. Here are five charts showing the best way to reach them.

1. Millennials are anxious about money—just like everyone else

About 8 in 10 millennials are concerned about savings, according to Bankrate. They’re outnumbered only by Gen Zers, who have grown up in the shadow of millennial debt.

Older millennials are saddled with more debt than any other US age group, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, as student debt compounds with housing and childcare costs.

As inflation persists, that means millennials are cautious about discretionary spending and saving for necessities.

2. Millennials are extremely online

Millennials currently make up 30.3% of US social network users, more than any other generation, according to our forecast. As Gen Z grows up, they’re gaining on millennials a bit. But millennials will continue to outnumber Gen Z—and every other generation—through at least 2026.

3. Millennials are logged on, but not all the way bought in

Millennials are more likely than any other generation to trust Facebook, according to our data, but that trust is falling.

Millennials are leaving Facebook (as are Gen X and baby boomers) and their Instagram use is stagnating. Their TikTok use is on the rise, meaning advertisers may want to invest more in the channel to meet millennials. Of course, TikTok’s entire US existence is on more precarious footing than ever, so tread carefully.

4. Millennials are most likely to buy on social

More than half of millennials are social media buyers, according to our data. Even privacy concerns can’t stop this generation from engaging with the occasional Instagram ad. Social buying is increasing in the US across the board, and this year, for the first time, more than half of all social users will make purchases on social platforms, according to our forecast.

5. Look to brand accounts

When they do buy and browse online, millennials are looking at brand accounts rather than influencer or retailer accounts, according to Klarna. Influencer culture is often considered a millennial concept because that’s where it began, but millennials are more comfortable with the info delivered from brands.

Don’t sink your full social budget into creators. Make sure they’re in the mix, but invest in creative uses of your brand’s account as well.

This was originally featured in the eMarketer Daily newsletter. For more marketing insights, statistics, and trends, subscribe here.