Ford’s marketing department is targeting so-called ‘millennials’ – people between the ages of 16-32 – via the Twitter micro-blogging service.

A report in Advertising Age says that Ford is working with Twitter to reach the social-media savvy consumers. The report says that the ‘millennials’ account for a disproportionately high number of the Twitter audience (55% of the Twitter audience coming from the 16-32 age group, versus 40% of the rest of the internet).

“This group of consumers is an incredible market opportunity, but the way that millennials interact with brands is totally different from earlier generations,” said Sheryl Connelly, global consumer trends and futuring manager at Ford, speaking to Advertising Age.

Ms. Connelly added that millennials don’t want to be talked at by a brand but instead want to be part of the conversation. “Understanding their priorities helps us market to them, so that we’re giving a message that is relevant to them.”

The report suggests that while Ford is not building a car specifically aimed at millennials, Ford is getting insight into how the ‘old marketing message – showing off the engine, the speed, the car body itself – is not working for the new generation’. Millennials are not as interested as baby boomers were in a car as a status symbol, the report adds. The car for them is about basic transportation – but adding technology to the car turns the car into a “lifestyle enabler,” said Ms. Connelly.

The report also said that Ford outlined several keys to getting millennials interested in Ford cars that boiled down to giving them what they’ve come to expect from their offline and online life: connectivity, individuality and instant gratification.