The Rules of Millennial Marketing, According to Stock Photos

The reusable water bottle brand Bobble recently released an ad that parodies all of the tired commercial millennial clichés: running in fields, pushing each other in grocery carts, standing epically on the top of mountains. You know, the usual stuff.

While Bobble’s ad is a joke, it highlights an important truth in the advertising world: Companies that are desperately trying to understand millennials tend to lack any real understanding of the demographic. (And that’s coming from a real-life twenty-something behind the keyboard.)

What do marketers truly think about Generation Y? I searched the word “millennial” on Shutterstock to find out.

1. They are a nameless, faceless horde

No one under 30 has a name. They’re just “millennial.” Kids these days hate individuality, despite what you might think. It’s much cooler to be part of one big, nebulous mass!

2. They love labels

If someone doesn’t have “millennial” permanently tattooed on his body, he’s a 50-year-old in disguise.

You’ve been warned.

If a road isn’t aggressively spray painted with the word “MILLENNIALS,” steer clear. Boring old people hang out there. Only personally labeled streets will do for the Me Generation.

3. Unlike everyone else, millennials only live once

Gen Y is the first generation to have one life. You know, because everyone else has at least nine. (Not cats. That’s a common misconception.)

Of course, members of the Me Generation have to remind themselves of mortality with chalkboards because instead of getting real jobs and trying to support themselves, they’re only interested in meaningless labels and self-identification.

4. Ties + devices = eternal happiness

If millennials manages to get out of their pajamas and into a suit, they will enjoy instant success for their hard work. Look at how happy these dapper gentlemen are! Bonus joy points because they have bowties—very Brooklyn of them.

He must be on top of the world! Look at that white collared shirt! And is that a tablet? An e-reader? What a cross-platform breed of human!

These guys don’t even need jobs—they sold their startup at 16! Now they just sit around in their suits, look at their phones, and enjoy perpetual bliss.

See what happens when a millennial doesn’t have a tablet within arm’s reach? He simply can’t survive. He’s wearing a suit, for God’s sake. Someone save him.

5. Women are actually photo-taking automatons

Twenty-something women never wear suits. Why would they? Millennial ladies don’t need jobs— their life force comes exclusively from selfies.

The one fault with the female millennial robot is that she has horrible eyesight and a perpetually cold head. That’s why she always wears black-rimmed glasses and an oversized hat. Otherwise, her machinery will shut down. You must, therefore, always give away free hats with every purchase. For how else will she live long enough for you to build loyalty?

Image by Watchworld

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