If you’re not marketing to baby boomers then you’re missing out on a huge potential marketplace.
Officially I’m not a “baby boomer” as this generation of “self- centered,” “individualistic” guys who have driven every other generation mad, are folks born between the years 1946 – 1964.
This old Aussie marketer was born in 1945 – one year earlier right at the end of WW2.
But close enough to be able to accurately share my thoughts and experiences about marketing to baby boomers. Agree?
Why Should You Consider Marketing to Baby Boomers?
Let’s put things in perspective here.
If you live in the USA there is 76 million of my generation of baby boomers.
Not only that, they have the most disposable income of all generations so far and they comprise 50% of all retail sales.
The majority are quite “tech savvy,” in the USA alone, more than 66% of my baby boomer generation regularly purchase online AND these very same guys will be inheriting trillions of dollars over the next 20 years.
So if that’s not a viable marketplace, what is?
Watch my quick video below for some critical elements about how you should be marketing to us baby boomers
The next obvious question is…
How to Optimize Your Marketing to Baby Boomers?
Here come the tricky bits and if you really want to succeed with your marketing to baby boomers then make sure you watch my quick video right here in this post.
As we are well-known as the “me” generation for our self-centered attitudes, you MUST be aware of some critically important elements if you want to make your marketing to baby boomers as profitable as it certainly could be.
1. Pre the Personal Computer
Remember when many of us were born, personal computers had not even been invented yet.
As a young Aussie, I can clearly remember in 1962 visiting Sydney University that proudly boasted that it had this amazing computer called “SILLIAC” that was a five-ton machine.
We were all suitably impressed even though we had no idea of what this “punch-card” monster was all about.
Enough to say that its capacity would not even match 15% of my laptop today!
As marketers be aware that a proportion of my baby boomer generation are still not all that familiar or confident using the internet. Yes we are learning quickly but still behind the other generations in our willingness to “shop online”
Perhaps 50% of us are tech savvy and about 33% of us have “smart phones.”
However, unlike Generation X (1965 – 1980) or the Millennials (1981 – 2000), the way we use our smartphones has big implications for the way you try and market to us.
Most of us with “smart phones” use them to check our emails, surf around our Facebook account, maybe watch the occasional YouTube video but rarely would we even consider PURCHASING anything online via our phone.
By all means, we’ll purchase online if you’ve approached us the right way with your offers but we’ll complete the transactions via our PC or laptop.
Maybe it’s because many of us are still coming to terms with the sheer power of mobile technology.
Keep this in mind when you’re planning your campaigns for marketing to baby boomers.
2. Handle With Care on Social Media
More and more of us baby boomers are becoming very active members of social media, especially Facebook.
Actually, more than 70% of us now have Facebook accounts.
This is probably one of the reasons why many of the Millennial generation are leaving that platform and seeking some peace from us baby boomers on sites like SnapChat or Periscope!
But as marketers, you better be aware that the fastest growing segment of the Facebook colossus by far, are women over the age of 55 years – absolute prime baby boomer marketing candidates.
However, when attempting to market to us on social media, remember that we’re there really for social reasons and are not impressed by you “friending” us and then immediately pitching us whatever you are trying to sell.
You’ll be wasting your time if you adopt this stupid yet extremely common “push marketing” approach.
PRICELESS TIP: Find a baby boomer friend, be a friend, help a friend and let things develop from there.
3. Our Baby Boomer Mindsets
Remember our self-centered attitudes and whatever you do NEVER refer to us as “old” or even “seniors.”
Yes, I know we’re getting old but we hate to be reminded of that very fact.
I can clearly remember being told as a teenager to “never trust anyone over 30.”
We now proclaim that 50 is the new 30! We’re a “self-preserving” lot when it comes to mindset.
So in your marketing please make sure you keep this in mind and use subtle measures to grab our attention.
For example, my eyesight is nowhere near what it was even 10 years ago and I if I come across emails, blog posts or offers of any kind online (or offline) that are in font sizes of less than 14 then I simply ignore them.
Also, make sure that your content shows me “how to” do particular things as all of us baby boomers LOVE devouring lots of information before we make any decisions.
Just make sure your font sizes are relevant to us plus use lots of white spaces and images.
We’ll react much more favourably if we can read and enjoy your content with straining our already “ageing” faculties – but please don’t quote me on this or I'll deny saying it!
4. Do As You Say and Keep your Promises
My generation was brought up with the mantra that “your word is your bond.”
So never, ever make promises that you cannot deliver.
If you fail to deliver, even by a day or so, you’ll only ever do this once as your baby boomer prospective customer will never trust you again.
We baby boomers are savvier and more discerning consumers than any other previous generation.
Rather than just sticking to the “tried, trusted and true” approach of our parents when it comes to buying things, we are more likely to switch products until we find the one that really meets our needs.
So don’t play games with us and focus your marketing on honesty and reliability.
TIP: We have been exposed to exceptional customer service experiences all our life and if you can’t meet our expectations then this extremely profitable market segment is not for you.
5. We Baby Boomers are a High Touch Generation
We like to see, touch and feel the things we want to purchase. Don’t ask me why – we just do.
We like to check everything out but when we can do this and you can deliver as promised, you’ll probably have a customer for life.
So when it comes to our online digital world, if you’re serious about marketing to baby boomers then let us “inside.”
We love to be able to see “behind the scenes” and those marketers who let us baby boomers check out what you do, how you do it and how you can really help us, will be the real winners in marketing to my generation.
If you want to get our attention, engage us and get us interested in whatever you have to offer, please take these thoughts into consideration when planning your next marketing to baby boomers campaign.
Lisa Jahred is one of my wonderful regular readers and she posted a comment that reminded me of another key issue. Thanks for the heads up Lisa!
When I call you could you please answer your phone? Responding to text messages seems to be far more important to some folks and we baby boomers prefer to talk not text. OK?
Baby Boomer Future Posts
I have many baby boomers as regular readers and they have asked me to help them out with their online aspirations.
For many baby boomers who are nearing or at retirement, they are finding this is a time of disappointment and regret.
They’re disappointed because they didn’t plan better for their retirement years and regret that they have to get at least a part-time job to make ends meet.
Embarking on a second career for baby boomers isn’t as daunting as it may seem.
Now, with the powers of the Internet at their backs, baby boomers can learn new skills and build an Internet business they can use to supplement incomes and keep their minds sharp.
By the way, even if you’re not a baby boomer make sure your parents get this blog address as what I’m planning to share may be of great help and interest to them.