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Marketing to Baby Boomers vs. Millennials

Marketing strategies vary from place to place, and generation to generation. Adaption is necessary to remain ahead of the trends, and in a wider audience. Marketing to Baby Boomers is possibly the most comfortable and familiar to members of the marketing and communications industries. This group, born after the second world war and beginning in 1946, lasted until 1964 when the next generation was born. There are an estimated 79 million baby boomers in the world today. The Boomers acquired their name from the evidence of falling marriage rates after World War II, but the sharp rise of births. This is mostly attributed to the economic boom after the war. All history lessons aside, the Boomers were once the largest generation in the world. More recently, the Millennials surpassed their numbers. 

The Baby Boomers are very focused on their careers as borderline workaholics and are goal oriented. As they enter retirement, modern marketing experts will need to develop their methods for appealing to them. They are known for their independence and drive for success. As recent as 2011, the Boomers began leaving the workplace and easing into retirement, and the youngest will follow within the next decade. With increased technology and the changes of trends, marketing must develop to what the people will most effectively respond to. Millennials are more experienced and welcoming of technology than many Baby Boomers. This is one thing for marketing experts to keep in mind. With their impending retirement, marketing can develop long-lasting positive impressions to create a more personal relationship between consumer and business. 

Furthermore, the Baby Boomers are generally not fond of modern trends and ‘fads.’ While Millennials seem to even thrive on visual and experience of changing trends, the Boomers are not amused. This means a certain creativity when considering how to properly market to them. What some would call “Old School” methods are certainly acceptable here, as the Boomers love long-form reading and unabbreviated explanations. This goes without saying that many Baby Boomers adapted effortlessly to the modern technology craze, and it is hard to find someone relying on the mailman for information. With today’s generation, everything is online as newspapers become a rarity and internet news sources grow with them on the go reliability. In a world that seems to more favor the Millennial generation, Baby Boomers still benefit and marketing firms adjust their target audience. 

In stark difference, the Millennials are a grouping all their own. In fact, they could be considered nearly the exact opposite of Baby Boomers. Millennials were born beginning in 1980 and lasting until the turn of the millennium. They are projected to reshape the economy. With the newest labeled largest generation in the world, Millennials accept many of the things the Boomers deny. Social media is the grandest and easiest way to reach this group, and cooperation or sharing with other brands to make a statement. According to Hubspot, 70 percent of consumers read online reviews about a product before purchasing it. Millennials are much more impulsive compared to the Baby Boomers and open to intense change in societal norms. This is not to say that it is any easier to market to a Millennial, but it surely is more easily received. 

It is really quite fascinating to consider the different requirement for reaching various audiences, whether they are varying geographical locations or in this case different generations. Marketing then becomes not what some could consider simplistic, but more diverse in its implementation methods. Print media, direct mail, telemarketing, and broadcast media have more transitioned into websites, social networking, and online ads. While the former has higher success rates and initiatives that the public can more easily understand, the latter is more cost-efficient and allows an immediate response from the consumers. 

This also does not mean that an effective marketing plan implements one or the other methods. In fact, the most effective marketing plan will implement all of the above if applicable. This is an increase in publication and likelihood of discovery. Digital costs may be cheaper, and surely the easiest way to reach the masses in the greatest population count, but it is not the only effective way to reach consumers. Millennials and Baby Boomers both have their raving qualities and both capable of amazing marketers with their responses to various ads in many forms. While there are differences in their perceived preferences, a formulation of methods is best successful to reach both masses. 

Source Links:

Baldassarre, Christina. (2017). 10 Tips for Millennial Marketing. Retrieved from: https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/287905

Gross, Geoff. (2017). 5 Ways to Effectively Market to Baby Boomers. Retrieved from: https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/274727

Mercer. (2015). Traditional vs. Online Marketing. Retrieved from: https://seriouslysimplemarketing.com/traditional-vs-online-marketing/