Baby Boomers – Past, Present, or Future?
Oh Millennials, one of the most studied and talked about generation to date! But, with all this focus on millennials we might be overlooking an important generation, and target market. It's actually arguable that marketing dollars are best spent targeting the baby boomer generation. Easier said than done, as baby boomers are a unique market of people that want to be reminded of their previous accomplishments and future opportunities, but not their age! Baby boomers are anyone ages 51 – 69, representing 20% of America’s population. They are often mistakenly thought of as the residents of retirement homes and assisted living facilities.
However, in reality they are still key players in the working class. Traditionally, 65 is viewed as the age that the working class desires for retirement, but this age is increasing across the nation.
Retirement age might be approaching for boomers, but don’t be mistaken, they cannot be represented by traditional stereotypes. Baby boomers are America’s heaviest consumers of television and they are actively becoming more technologically inclined. While the buzz about streaming taking over the television industry is making headlines, the baby boomers are still connected to television programming. Along with loyalty to television, baby boomers are showing an increased presence online.
Social media is not just for millennials, as baby boomers are the largest potential viewers of Facebook and Twitter advertisements. Research shows that 82.3% of baby boomers belong to at least one social media site, with the majority being Facebook users. When marketing to baby boomers, we must understand how they use social media. They differ from the users of Instagram or Snapchat that are that are posting pictures of their Friday night out on the town. Baby boomers are more likely to post about their families, pets, and vacations than their recent selfies.
Over 75 million people in the U.S. are part of the baby boomer generation and they control 70% of the nation’s disposable income. Baby boomers were the inventors of the suburbs and still reside there, owning homes that are already paid for. An estimated 70% of baby boomers believe their current house is not as good as it gets and are looking for a more luxurious place filled with the latest amenities. As parents and grandparents, baby boomers spend their disposable income on people in every generation. They are spending more of their money now and saving less of it for their children’s inheritance. We know that baby boomers have money and are ready to use it. With their disposable incomes comes options, which opens a powerful marketing opportunity.
Baby boomers are not a phenomenon of the past, they have shaped the present and will remain part of the ever-changing future.