It’s no secret and brands know it: millennials today are the big spenders of tomorrow. This puts them bang in the middle of the focal point of all the attention brands and businesses when it comes to figuring out who their target audience is. As these businesses and services are straddling onto the era of big data and artificial intelligence, the $200 billion question (since that’s how much millennials in US alone spent in 2017) is: are millennials ready for AI?
There are two ways of look at it. First, we need to see millennials as consumers. There’s some good news there, at least if you’re a brand trying to woo this age bracket. 62 percent millennials are okay with making their data more visible to businesses and services if that trade off means they will be served with more personalized AI-based shopper options and customized ads, because they believe targeted campaigns are a win-win for both brand and consumer.
The question gets a little trickier in the other case when we consider millennials as a workforce, competing with each other in a world where job and financial security sit at the top of the proverbial priority pyramid. Do millennials need to worry about losing jobs with the advent of AI taking over routine jobs? Yes and no. The fear of job loss owing to AI is not unfounded by any margin. However, the two keywords to take note of are: relevance and adaptability. As the more routine jobs are and day-to-day grind work gets handed over to machines, many in the unskilled and low skilled labor category might tend to look elsewhere. Alternatively, they can stay ahead of the curve by starting to train themselves in skills that will be more relevant once the machines come in big time. Thanks to the ever-changing economy, jobs and skill sets keep reinventing themselves. Just as if social media and blogging were new and big in the last decade, the next decade too will see a rise in heavily specialized jobs. People whose skills can make the machines learn better and faster, will never be out of opportunities, and that is where young jobseekers need to concentrate, if stability is what they’re looking for.
But that’s not all. Unlike the generations before us, millennials cannot afford complacency. They’ll have to be ready to upgrade their skills with every passing disruption AI and Big Data will cause, and believe it or not, there will be many. So adaptability is the mantra they’ll need to follow.