You’ve seen them: in cars, in coffeeshops, and in countless articles trying to explain what they do and why they do it.

Millennials are everywhere. For marketers, they’ve become a hot topic of discussion over the past few years.

And no wonder:

  • Millennials have hit the workforce and will continue to do so for the next 5-10 years.
  • As a result, their share of disposable income is growing.
  • Businesses who want to be a part of millennials’ spending habits aren’t sure how to get their attention.

In this post and short video, you’ll discover a powerful way to learn more about how they communicate.

How Can Your Business Reach Millennials?

If you’re one of those marketers trying to find out how to reach millennials, you’ve no doubt found the Internet more than willing to supply plenty of anecdote and speculation.

You’ll learn, for example, that…

Guess that’s what you get when you leave it to non-millennials to tell you what millennials are doing.

Here’s How Millennials REALLY Use Technology

So we decided to go right to the source: millennials themselves.

Here’s what our research created: The Generation MEdia Explorer.

What is it?

  • A free interactive tool that helps you research and analyze how millennials use technology.
  • A way to explore over 90 million original data points using filters to combine data.
  • An easy way to share what you discover with your friends and colleagues.

Where Did This Data on Millennials Come From?

Every year, we offer a scholarship to one talented student to put toward their college studies. We ask candidates to submit an essay about technology, and we choose a winner from the entries.

When setting up the most recent scholarship, we thought “who better to ask about how millennials use technology… than millennials themselves.” Makes sense, right?

We added a survey to the application process. It asked applicants a series of questions about:

  • What communication and media technologies they use
  • What they use each one for
  • Who they use each one with
  • When they use each one – and for how long

We also collected some demographic data – location, age, and gender – so that the data paint a more comprehensive picture of how groups of millennials use technology.

All in all, over 1300 students applied for the scholarship and completed the survey.

“What, No Infographic?”

Sure, we could have taken this data and just made an infographic.

But let’s be honest: how many infographics are out there? Tons… and after a while they all blend together. A pie chart here, a line graph there, and a handful of cherry-picked conclusions in each one. Yawn.

What’s interesting to us isn’t just what WE find in the data — it’s all the interesting facts you and others discover while playing with the data.

What Can YOU Discover About How Millennials Use Technology?

A lot of time and effort went into creating this tool…

… but we didn’t do it for us. We did it for you.

We hope you’ll find it useful as a market research tool, a source of stats for your articles and presentations, and as a starting point for conversations about how technology use will change over time.

Building and playing around with this has been a lot of fun for us. But now, it’s your turn to play.

Visit the Generation MEdia Explorer and uncover your own findings about how millennials are using technology.

Once you’ve checked it out, we’d love to know: what’s the most interesting stat you’ve found so far? Share in the comments below.