Marketers target enormous baby boomer generation for holidays

 
The holidays have arrived. Is your business ready to reap its share of the discretionary spending bonanza that will wash through our economy between now and early January, writes Kern Lewis for Forbes.com. Lewis says this year looks to be quite a decent year for spending.

Bing Crosby (left), Danny Kaye and Rosemary Clooney in the 1954 classic, White Christmas.

If you need a few more ideas about whom to target with scarce marketing dollars, Lewis urges marketers to focus on the generation that has the most money to spend discretionarily? Boomers represent close to 80 million U.S. consumers and hold 70% of disposable income in the U.S:

Baby Boomers! If you want to talk to the people who can afford to buy fancy gifts in quantity, no other segment of the population comes close, Lewis writes.

Baby Boomers have finally gotten the attention of marketers … and, here’s why:

  • The leading consumers in 119 out of 123 CPG (Consumer Packaged Goods) categories
  • Spend more money on technology than Gen X or Gen Y – an average of $650 per month
  • 40% of all customers who pay for wireless service
  • Close to 100% own computers (and 41% own an Apple)
  • 53% of them are on Facebook (driven in part by the arrival of grandchildren – see below)
  • 71% of Boomers go online every day
  • 66% send text messages (albeit not quite as many as their teenagers and grandchildren)
  • Spend $7 billion online annually
  • Purchase 62.5% of new cars
  • Purchase 80% of luxury travel
  • Spend more than any other generation on health care and pharmaceuticals
  • One in 7 boomers care for a parent or family member

Lewis writes that Baby Boomers are spending a lot of their wealth on their grandchildren. And, he quotes a recent report by ABC News:

“The new crop of baby boomer grandparents is also doing more with, and for, their grandchildren, opening up their purses and wallets, and spending a collective total of $35 billion a year on their grandkids. On average, they spend $500 a year on grandchildren, up from $320 in 1992.”

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