Key takeaways in this post:

  • Millennials outnumber baby boomers. They’ll also make more healthcare decisions.
  • 67% of millennials are more likely to use email for online shopping.
  • Millennials value concise, reliable content. They also value patient reviews and ratings.
  • Millennials prefer purpose-driven brands. Highlight community impact and core values.

Have you cracked the code of millennial marketing? If not, you’re not alone. Healthcare organizations and marketers have puzzled over this group for years. As millennials reach their mid-30s, they may become parents or caregivers. So, it’s time to get serious about marketing healthcare to them.

How old are millennials? Opinions differ on what a millennial (Generation Y) is. The U.S. Census Bureau says they were born between 1982 and 2000. The Pew Research Center defines a millennial as someone born between 1981 and 1996.

No matter how you define it. There were 72.24 million U.S. millennials in 2022. This number represents the most of any generation. It also means they’ll make a large share of healthcare decisions.

Graph of projected population by generation

Experts predicted millennials would surpass baby boomers. Image credit: Pew Research Center.

Most millennials are children of baby boomers. But their healthcare habits are much different. Many millennials don’t have a primary care provider. Instead, they go to walk-in clinics and fee-for-service models. Digital tools are also a key part of this generation’s healthcare. They expect convenience through technology, whether it’s:

  • Finding information
  • Making an appointment
  • Communicating with a doctor

Given these preferences. How can marketers reach millennials?

1. Remember your old friend email marketing

TrueList reported a drop in millennial platform usage. It fell from 75% in late 2021 to 69% by November 2022. If social media marketing is losing steam, what’s a marketer to do? It’s time to go back to email marketing. Edison Mail reports that 67% of millennials are more likely to use email for online shopping. Email done right is a powerful content marketing channel. Consider revamping your old newsletter. Or create an email campaign. It should draw people in with practical wellness content (more on that later).

Related: Why healthcare marketers shouldn’t overlook Generation X

2. Have a mobile- and tech-first mindset

Mobile should be top of mind in millennial healthcare marketing. Insider Intelligence predicted that 94.4% of millennials would own smartphones in 2022.

Consider how patients interact with your hospital or health system. Can they make appointments online or with an app? Can they text or communicate with a provider? Most consumers expect brands to have tech-first features. Healthcare is no exception. An Insider Intelligence survey of millennials uncovered the following statistics:

  • 69% used an app for fitness in the past week
  • 63% use social media to find health information
  • 58% have used telehealth for themselves or a dependent
  • 50% own a wearable device to monitor or track health
Chart showing how millennials are engaging with healthcare

Millennials are more likely to support the use of technology in healthcare. Source: Insider Intelligence.

3. Feature concise, trustworthy content.

A mobile-first mindset is also important when thinking about healthcare content. Easy-to-read content is good for health literacy. Consumers want concise content they can read on a mobile device. Also, millennials are more likely to search for health information online. Make sure to provide trustworthy health content on your website or blog. Millennials also look at reviews and ratings. Consider adding these features to your physician bios.

Screenshot of the Duke Health provider directory

Reviews and ratings are important to millennials. They look for them in healthcare content, especially when searching for a doctor. This Duke Health provider directory includes ratings. It also lets you book online.

4. Be honest and authentic

Whether you’re marketing retail or healthcare, 30% of millennials trust brands less. Traditional, sales-forward ads don’t get far with this group. Millennials are looking at brands that strive to do good for their community, the environment or a global cause. Rather than spending money on another ad campaign that touts an award or ranking, try the following tactics:

  • Use patient stories and testimonials. They show how your organization helps people.
  • Use video or photos to show behind-the-scenes content. This allows you to highlight your expertise or values.
  • Feature video profiles of staff, physicians and patients. They’re the face of your brand and will better connect with consumers.

5. Emphasize wellness content and programming

As you plan your editorial calendar or schedule community events, wellness content can be a great way to engage millennials. Why? Millennials care about exercise. They also care about nutrition and mental health.

A WebMD study shows they expect more wellness programs at work. Presenting wellness content can be tricky, so make sure you use the following strategies:

6. Create interactive and engaging content

Create content that’s informative and engaging. Millennials are more likely to respond to interactive videos, polls or quizzes. Use social media platforms to:

  • Share health tips.
  • Conduct Q&A sessions.
  • Host live events.

This builds community and makes healthcare information easier to understand.

Marketing to millennials may seem like a big leap. But these steps will help you market across generations. Plus, you’ll have the tools to tackle the next wave of consumers — Gen Z.

WG Content’s team of experts can help you develop custom content that fits your audience. Whether it’s websites, blogs or email campaigns, we can help. Drop us a line to learn more.

Millennials value health and wellness. They’re more likely to seek information on healthy living and preventive care.

Millennials care about exercise. They also care about nutrition and mental health. Share content from trusted sources. This will show credibility.

Use patient stories, testimonials and behind-the-scenes content. You can also feature video profiles of staff, doctors and patients.

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