Several months ago we ran a useful piece — very useful — about awesome discounts at stores and restaurants for baby boomers, 50 and older (which is virtually all of us now). We got it from baby boomer expert Alexis Abramson. Since then, she’s been thinking about what other trends businesses adopt in order to make their products and services baby boomer friendly. You’ll like what she’s learned.
Advertising might be obsessed with the 18-35 set, but the baby boomer population is one of the fastest growing demographics in America. Businesses that want to see a boost in their business and stay ahead of the game absolutely need to cater to this market.
The Market is Trending Towards Baby Boomers
One example that I’ve used in the past is ski resorts for boomers, but it certainly doesn’t stop there. In addition to providing services that are targeted to boomers, they also need to invest in advertising that appeals to boomers too. In fact, Aging 2.0 recently put together a retrospective on this year’s Super Bowl commercials, and how there was more of a focus on the older American population. Super Bowl commercials are the biggest market indicators of where the consumer mindset is headed, so if they’re targeting baby boomers with their marketing, then everyone ought to.
The Buying Power of Baby Boomers
Think about the 50+ population as a whole. Boomers not only wield enormous purchasing power since that’s who make the major decisions in our households, but according to “BOOM: Marketing to the Ultimate Power Consumer — The Baby-Boomer Woman,” “aging” parents account for 80% of the consumer goods market. Not only that, but in the USA Today series “Senior Moment: Boomers Turn 65” from a couple years back, they noted that baby boomers are accumulating much more wealth than younger counterparts, accounting for $2.9 trillion in consumer spending in 2009. Don’t know why that’s significant? Despite the 2008 recession, baby boomer spending was up an astonishing 45% as compared to the previous ten years, that’s why!
Baby Boomers and the Family
Of course, that doesn’t mean that boomers spend money willy nilly. Baby boomers are also concerned about the future and the family’s future, as evidenced by this post from Forbes about how baby boomers are starting to spend less on frills. Instead, baby boomers are worried about helping out adult children and paying off mortgages. Family is one of the highest priorities among baby boomers, so services that cater to those feelings will resonate with boomers — especially since grandparents are providing more financial support to their grandchildren than ever, according to MetLife’s Mature Market Institute. Financial institutions are taking advantage of this trend by providing retirement and pension plans that older adults can pay into for their loved ones, such as Brightpeak Financial’s Gift a GRiP program. Targeted services like these are definitely the key when it comes to appealing to aging parents.
It’s Time to Focus on Baby Boomers
As you can see, the 50+ population is still a swiftly developing consumer market, and it’s hitting an all-time high in terms of global aging. While catering to baby boomers may not necessarily fit into every business’s products and services, these examples show that this generation is definitely a demographic that deserves closer attention from business. I think you’ll be surprised at how well you will respond to a company if it just takes the time to make itself baby boomer friendly with products and services meant especially for you.