Two big-cap companies, McDonald's and Coca-Cola, reported disappointing earnings Tuesday. One fear among investors is a disinterest among millennials in such iconic brands.
McDonald's reported its worst monthly comparable sales decrease in the U.S. and Europe since early 2003, while Coca-Cola unveiled a cost-cutting program as its worldwide soda volume was flat and revenue slipped in the third quarter.
Ilana Stern, a millennial retail expert and founder of Weddington Way, an e-commerce platform for millennial consumers, told CNBC that being connected and giving context should be top of mind for attracting the generation to spend. She said brands need to understand that the generation interacts differently than previous ones.
"It's not about push-marketing and brand endorsement. They value the opinions of their peers and community," she said in an interview with "Power Lunch."