Sometimes it seems like the hottest topic in marketing is how to capture the attention (and credit cards) of Millennials. Whether true or not, they’re notoriously described as being self-involved and tech-savvy, and there’s no shortage of articles about how difficult it is to connect with them.
But as companies rework their attempts to woo this younger demographic, they’re missing out on a potential goldmine that will soon be flying under the radar.
Baby Boomers to be a solid, tech-literate consumer market
That’s right. Although firms are zeroing in on twenty- and thirty-somethings, they should really be focusing on their Baby Boomer parents. CS News recently detailed a report from the Fung Business Intelligence Centre that found only about 10% of marketing budgets in the US target this older demographic, even though “Boomers outspend Millennials by nearly $8,000 annually.”
That amount is especially shocking when you consider that most mobile and social marketing strategies assume an approach that caters to those under 40. If you’re guilty of that assumption in your own marketing strategy, consider redefining your methods because, despite persistent generalizations, Boomers aren’t the technophobes that stereotypes would lead you to believe.
Research released by the Pew Research Center in January revealed that more than half of consumers 65 years or older and 63% of consumers aged 50-64 use Facebook. Moreover, more than half of US adults aged 50-64 own a smartphone.
What does this mean for your marketing strategy?
It means that you not only have to evaluate which channels you use, but you also have to take a fresh look at your messaging and tactics. Of course we recommend a coordinated, cross-media approach, but any strategy will be more successful if you segment your efforts, tailor your message and be sure you have Boomer-specific promotions. Capture customers’ ages via online forms when they sign up for your email database. Target Boomers specifically when defining audiences for social media ads or direct mailers.
As far as your promos themselves, try to tap into what defines the generation. For example, say you own a restaurant. You may normally highlight your late night drink specials or draw attention to family-friendly events, but that may not interest more mature audiences. Of course it’s bound to intrigue some, but you may get a better response if you have drink specials with names that harken back to the 70s, host theme nights centered around films from the 60s, or offer a discount when customers bring in their grandchildren.
Be sure you don’t focus all of your messaging on this older generation, though! You certainly don’t want to alienate the spending power of the other subsets in your customer base.