When I was in college, I heard my college pastor say over and over again “leaders are readers.” I’ve come to realize how true this statement is in an information hungry world where people, especially millennials, are lusting after current real-time information, potentially even more than physical connection.
Because information has become so accessible, thanks to companies like Google and apps like Flip Board, it is easier than ever to become informed about what’s happening worldwide. For instance, Google has started borrowing information from online dictionaries and review sites like Yelp and Trip Advisor by providing definitions and reviews directly on their front page. Google is responding to this information hungry generation by providing relevant information in a matter of seconds.
Most of the population driving this lust for information is comprised of millennials. Forbes Magazine named 2015 the “year of the millennial customer” and stated there are over 80 million millennials in the United States alone.
As a member of the millennial generation, I believe one of the most positive characteristics of this generation is the fact that we are cause driven. According to Forbes, “more than 50% of millennials make an effort to buy products from companies that support the causes they care about.” If the most significant consumers in the market right now are millennials, who care about investing in products and people that align with their values and passions, then it’s vital to be engaged with what’s going on in our world.
Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance.” With the lust for and availability of real time information steadily rising, ignorance really shouldn’t be an option anymore – for millennials and business owners alike.
One cause that has recently gripped my attention is the Syrian Refugee Crisis. Something in me has come undone listening to stories, watching videos and hearing first hand about what's happening in Eastern Europe right now. This is an issue we can’t afford to be ignorant toward – I believe it’s changing the face of the entire continent of Europe and the world as we know it.
If you’re a member of the millennial generation, I suggest you educate yourself about what’s happening in the Middle East and Eastern Europe and start supporting businesses that are engaging issues you care about. If you need some suggestions, watch this video, visit this Instagram account or download this app and start following the Syrian Refugee Crisis. And stay tuned - I plan to share about my personal response to this situation soon.
And if you’re a business owner, my advice to you would be to start looking for ways to market your business and products in a way that captures the attention (and money) of an information-hungry, cause-driven generation. This is the generation dominating the market right now, and it’s the one who holds the power to start creating solutions to things like the worst refugee crisis and largest migration of people since WWII.
Millennials are integrating their beliefs into their choices and supporting causes they value through their purchases and lifestyles more than any other generation has before. They also have more access to information than ever before. It’s time we start using this to our advantage by engaging what’s happening our world while simultaneously supporting our own economy.