For brands of all sizes and across industries, social media has evolved to be the most ideal medium for promoting open and active communication with audiences and customers. But not all social content is equally effective for reaching all audiences. What if your brand is specifically looking to reach the under-30 crowd? We’ve put together a few handy tips for how to best tailor your brand’s social media content to this discerning demographic:

1. Create experiences, not advertisements
Social media users under 30 are especially skilled at spotting traditional advertisements from a mile away (and do not respond to them positively). Rather than creating content that blatantly advertises your product or service, work to engage your audience with videos, live streams, giveaways or other interactive experiences. The under-30 crowd is more likely to engage with your social content if someone in their family or friend network has already liked, commented or shared the post. This kind of continual engagement will ultimately foster a positive social media reputation with your target audience, and the conversions will follow.

2. Reach them on their platform of choice
Spoiler: it’s probably not Facebook. Although the social giant started out as a medium by and for college students, Facebook has now evolved into the platform-of-choice for older generations…and users under 30 are losing interest. You’re more likely to reach the younger crowd by familiarizing your brand with platforms like Instagram and Snapchat. As recently as last year, The New York Times referred to Instagram as “becoming Facebook’s next Facebook”, thanks in large part to those under 30. Do some research before promoting campaigns to determine just which platforms your target audience is using.

3. Make it quick
You’ve got a limited amount of time to grab attention with your social content. If it doesn’t stand out in the sea of other hundreds of posts, it will almost certainly get passed over and lost in the noise. Your content should be quick, relevant and eye-catching for those under 30. Get creative! Long winded or complicated content that requires more than a few seconds of engagement won’t appeal to a younger crowd.

4. Stay real
Brand authenticity is important to those under 30. So when it comes to connecting with them, don’t fake it. Younger generations are better than ever at spotting perfectly packaged branded advertisements and turning away from them. While all brand social content does have some element of advertising, make sure you’re crafting humanizing messaging, interactive content or unique perspectives. Above all, the under-30 crowd is more likely to engage with your brand if someone in their network has shared it first. Brands can only achieve this kind of engagement by keeping their messaging authentic.

5. Get creative
Your social media team should always keep an eye on what’s trending or popular on different social media channels. Maybe it’s an “ice bucket challenge” style viral video or a trending hashtag that everyone is getting behind. But in addition to following trends, it’s important that your team continually strives for creativity and uniqueness. Younger followers will be drawn to something new, exciting, or that resonates with them emotionally. Think Heineken’s “Open Your World” campaign, or the “Know Your Lemons” campaign from the Worldwide Breast Cancer organization. Whatever direction your team goes, you’re more likely to engage the younger demographic by getting your creative gears turning.