Beyond the tune-out: millennials and content marketing

Fact. Millennials are changing the way we consume media whether we like it or not. For example, according to research by Nielsen, the younger you drill down the more likely it is that person will consume media from a “TV-connected device” – ie anything but a television.

Tune-in, tune-out

More interestingly, they are increasingly attuned to marketing and show a higher inclination to switch away from it. One effect of this is a surge in the use of YouTube and a switch away from established media.

According to Nielsen, in 2015 the average person aged 18-to-34 spent four hours and eight minutes per day engaged in two hours and 45 minutes of live TV viewing and an hour and 23 minutes using a TV-connected device.

These groups are also more adept at doing their own product and brand research. Often this will come through social media and word of mouth. A quick glance at the 100 most followed Twitter accounts for this cohort will show it is personalities not brands that matter.

Reaching people

More innovative ways are going to be needed to reach these people. This could include putting content into video games or creating brand channels. Ultimately, the disruption technique – where you are forced to sit through an ad or click it off on your screen – is likely to fade.

If there is a way to meet the challenge of reaching this group, which is also likely to hit B2B, it has to be content marketing.


Yes, this is a big change – and one that will continue to manifest itself. People will not suddenly go back to consuming media as we have in the past just because they hit 30.

Undoubtedly, this means the changes we make to reach millennials now will become mainstream as we move forward. The key is to get their attention. This can only mean a blurring of the lines between marketing and content. In other words content marketing.

Beyond the tune-out: millennials and content marketing is part of Content24, the blog for London content marketing agency FirstWord.