Is it for generation me? A qualitative study exploring marketing and selling plants online to millennial-aged consumers.
Publication Date: May 13, 2020

Baker, L. M., Tully, K. M., Sumners, D. R., Jones, E. F., León-Reyes, A. E., Boyer, C. R., & Peterson, H. H. (2020). Is it for generation me? A qualitative study exploring marketing and selling plants online to millennial-aged consumers. Journal of Applied Communications, 104(2), 1-12. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4148/1051-0834.2289

Authors

Lauri M. Baker, University of Florida
Kelsey M. Tully, Kansas State University
Deanna R. Sumners, Kansas State University
Ernest Francis Jones, Kansas State University
Andrés E. León-Reyes, Kansas State University
Cheryl Boyer, Kansas State University
Hikaru H. Peterson, University of Minnesota

Summary

As online selling of products like living plants increases, it is increasingly important to understand how millennial-aged consumers perceive the purchasing experience. New-media technologies like social media, e-newsletters, and other forms of digital communication are easily adopted by millennial-aged consumers. One of these tools, 360-degree video, offers novel ways to preview products offered online and look inside local brick-and-mortar stores, which can be visited in person. Sales of horticultural goods online have been slow to be developed by industry veterans, creating ample opportunities available to new ventures. This qualitative study used a series of three focus groups to answer the research questions of RQ1: What challenges exist for garden centers attracting millennials? RQ2: What are millennials preferences for purchasing live plants online? RQ3: What aspects of digital online marketing influence millennials to make decisions? RQ4: What are millennials preferences for 360-degree video? Results of this study indicate 360-degree video is not the preferred avenue for marketing plants online to millennials, however, high-quality photos and video with educational content and the use of social media could be effective.