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In a time where any given employer could have four generations of people representing their workforce, marketers are also struggling to appeal to each generation with their marketing strategies. In this four-part series, we break down the characteristics of each generation — Baby Boomers, Gen X, Millennials and Gen Z — and discuss their values, buying habits and what not to say in your marketing.
Buyer personas can help you understand your customers better, but they may not get into the nuts and bolts of how each generation prefers to be marketed to and the values they hold when it comes to how your company operates.
Baby Boomers include those born between 1946 and 1964, currently ages 57 to 75. There are 71.6 million Baby Boomers in the U.S. They are more affluent and tech-savvy than you may think, so don’t count them out when it comes to digital marketing — they make up about 40% of the consumer market and hold 70% of all disposable income. They have a reputation for being hard workers who have diligently saved and spent wisely.
Baby Boomers are known for their confidence, self-reliance and strong work ethic. They also aren’t afraid to question the status quo.
They were there when the first black and white televisions were introduced, which means they’ve been around technology and have watched it evolve over time. According to the Pew Research Center:
“Baby Boomers continue to trail both Gen Xers and Millennials on most measures of technology adoption, but adoption rates for this group have been growing rapidly in recent years. For example, Boomers are now far more likely to own a smartphone than they were in 2011 (68% now vs. 25% then).”
Compared to the generation before them, Baby Boomers are staying in the workforce longer, spending their “Golden Years” working and saving to make sure they do have enough money when they decide to retire. They are the only age group segment experiencing growth in the workplace.
Baby Boomers tend to consume more traditional media like television, magazines, newspapers and radio. Despite that, 90% of them have Facebook accounts and are willing to keep up with technology to keep up with their families.
Baby Boomers prefer to shop online with their desktop computers and laptops rather than mobile devices, but that doesn’t mean they don’t use smartphones. Studies show that they spend at least five hours on their smartphones per day. Baby Boomers also spend as much time online as they do watching television and they even make more online purchases than their Millennial counterparts.
When it comes to making purchasing decisions, they tend to take their time and consider all the options. They worked hard to earn their money and they want to spend it right. Baby Boomers are also fiercely loyal to brands.
When it comes to spending:
Inclusivity in marketing doesn’t stop at what a person looks like. You have to consider their whole identity, what makes them tick and what influences their purchasing behaviors. Baby Boomers have been marketed to longer than most other generations, meaning you need to create marketing strategies that meet them where they are and consider what they’ve already been through. The things that resonate with Gen Z may not move the needle for the Baby Boomers.
Check out the other blogs in this series:
Marketing to Gen X
Marketing to Millennials – coming soon!
Marketing to Gen Z – coming soon!
Not sure how to parse the generations that make up your buyer personas? Kuno Creative has a team of experts ready to help segment your audience and boost your bottom line.