While it may seem like every brand is trying to appeal to the newest generation (Gen Z), the U.S. Census Bureau reports that millennials are the largest generation in the workforce right now—making the 26- to 41-year-olds a prime target audience for events.
However, millennials are known for being particular about what they spend their money on: They’re more likely to invest in experiences as they see value in them—unlike older generations, who are more conservative with their spending—but millennials are keen on ensuring there is enough value returned to them to justify the cost of attending.
So when it comes to attracting and converting millennial eventgoers, you first have to think like a millennial. Here’s where to start when planning a hybrid event.
1. Choose a location that suits the generation.
One of the biggest drivers of registration for any event is the location. For millennials, Marriott’s Meetings Imagined reported that the generation is most interested in large cities that offer access to public transportation and nighttime activities.  
To ensure you’re choosing a destination that speaks to millennials’ wish list, consider the following:
- Is the venue readily accessible to an airport?
- Does the local airport accommodate Uber/Lyft or airport shuttles?
- Is the venue close to top-rated restaurants and nightlife destinations?
- Is the area safe at night?
- Is the area walkable?
- Does the area offer easily accessible rideshare drivers (Uber/Lyft) or taxis?
- Is the city easy to explore on a budget?
- Does the venue highlight the charm of the host city?
2. Let dynamic content drive results.
As you’re planning your hybrid event’s content, it’s important to remember that millennials seek authenticity and passion in all forms of communications—from presentations and sessions to workshops and the like. Selected speakers should be trained to talk with them, not at them, and keep them involved in the conversation as much as possible. Again, millennials are actively seeking a return on their investment in an event, meaning they take their seat at the in-person or virtual table seriously and want to be included!
A continuously successful tactic for engaging millennials is the coveted “Instagrammable moment.” But don’t just stick a neon sign on a green wall—get creative and think outside the box to deliver a truly “share-worthy” experience that will resonate with them long after the event ends and help drive organic social media buzz.
3. Put engagement tactics into play.
Adding on to the fact that millennials like to be engaged and feel like they are part of the event, rather than just another attendee in the crowd, offer opportunities for them to do just that before, during, and after the event.
There are numerous ways you can engage attendees at each stage, but here’s an example: Pre-event, experiment sending out an internal survey to your audience via email to find common themes, patterns, and macro trends. You can use this data to plan your sessions accordingly, ultimately offering a more personalized experience that’s more likely to engage eventgoers. During the event, use live polling to validate or disprove your perspective. After sessions, always be sure to ask for feedback.
Gamification tactics are also great to include to boost engagement—but, similarly to photo moments, planners should think big to put a fresh, creative spin on them. Ask yourself:
- Would the activity be more memorable if done in a group setting?
- Would adding a countdown timer spur creative, on-the-spot thinking?
- Is there a way to accomplish the same goal while allowing participants to move around?
- Is it possible to share individual or team results in real time to encourage participation and high performance?
4. Share a purpose.
Because millennials value authenticity, an event with a bigger purpose will be more likely to attract a millennial audience. Can your event “go green” to reduce its environmental footprint? Is there an opportunity for attendees to help support a local charity that resonates with them? Can your event donate a portion of ticket proceeds and reveal the total donation during closing remarks?
Not only will having a philanthropic component help drive registration and support marketing efforts but your attendees will be even more likely to return for a sequential event.
5. Design the event for digital natives.
The good news when planning a hybrid event that’s targeting millennials: The tech-savvy generation allows you to incorporate technology with ease! Tech touchpoints like a mobile event app and phone/laptop charging station are a couple of essentials that are basically expected as a millennial eventgoer.
Other tech touchpoints could include QR codes and digital gamification. As the planner, the great use of technology benefits you the most. For example, by utilizing RFID attendee tracking, you can identify hot spots and crowd-favorite sessions that can help you tailor content and offer more of what’s popular in real time.
Looking for more hybrid event inspiration and ideas? Check out these resources from leading virtual and hybrid event platform Hubilo:
Click here to see how virtual and hybrid event platform Hubilo can take your digital experiences to new heights with cutting-edge event technology.
Do you have a link to this report we can include?
I think it's this based on Google search, though this is now 5 years old: https://www.prevuemeetings.com/trends/luxury-redefined/marriott-eyes-millennials-for-meetings-innovation-cues/