Many perceptions follow millennials around, and while some, I must admit, stand true (technology/social media-obsessed, tend to be job-hoppers), there are several I don’t agree with (lazy, unmotivated, narcissistic). When it comes to targeting millennials, some marketing strategists tend to think that this group is not brand loyal and is impossible to pin down. In fact, they say millennials will just go for whatever fits their current needs, at the best price. I disagree. To back up this notion, Access Development conducted a study on millennial brand loyalty. According to the research once millennials find a brand they like, 80 percent will keep coming back to it.

Want to know the simple secret to millennial loyalty? Good customer service, a quality product, and feeling heard are the three most cited reasons behind what it takes for a millennial to become loyal to a brand. It’s important for marketers to not only provide a product and experience they know millennials will love, but to also connect with them. The easiest way to achieve all three of these methods to attracting and retaining millennial loyalty is through social media. Millennials are social, so your brand must deeply integrate on the social channels they already trust. It will also increase the chances of customers posting about the great experiences they’ve had with the company on their own social pages, or encouraging their friends to buy the brand’s products.

For an example, I have long been loyal to Verizon. I know everyone has their own opinions about phone providers but Verizon has always been it for me. They deliver a great product, payment plan, and customer service. My phones always work exceptionally well, I get great service, and my in-store experience is always easy, efficient, and successful. In terms of quality product and customer service, Verizon had both boxes checked. Then there was one time I had a bit of a snafu. My recently purchased phone was experiencing difficulties and I went to the Verizon store to get it fixed. Long story short, I was told that unfortunately there was nothing I could do about the problem. Once I got home, I decided to tweet about my situation and tag Verizon in the tweet. Within a half hour, a Verizon representative responded to me, apologized, and instructed me on how I could solve my problem. I ended up going back to the store and left with a working phone!

There’s a lesson to be learned here – in addition to delivering a quality product and customer service, feeling heard is huge. Having a sense that there is someone out there that cares about my problem and wants to fix it, and actually did fix it, totally negated the rare, less-than-ideal experience I had and is a surefire way to gain my loyalty and trust. Even when my normally hassle-free phone was giving me a hard time, because of how the issue was resolved once I spoke out on social media, I am still ever-so-loyal to Verizon. Maybe even more loyal than before.

So for those naysayers that want to believe millennials have no loyalty, I disagree. If I find a great product that fits my needs, and consistently gives me a great customer experience (and apologizes and makes up for it when it doesn’t), I will be a loyal follower of that brand. If my voice is heard and the brand takes the time to listen about what I have to say, you can count me in for the long haul.