What do baby boomers want?

Here’s a question for you: What do baby boomers want? The answer might come in many forms, but Jan Marino of the Chicago suburb of Lisle, Illinois, an expert on reinventing ourselves, has written what you might call a Top Ten List of what we want from people who serve and service us.

First of all, you should know I have appointed myself an unofficial spokesperson for my generation: baby boomers. You know us…we’re that group of people who invented conspicuous consumption, won’t listen to anything about aging, hates getting aarp stuff at age 50. We’re continuously changing the rules we put place.

Jan Marino

Jan Marino

As the unofficial spokesperson I feel compelled to let you know what I’m hearing from 10K of my closest boomer friends. Here’s a list of ten things that we Boomers want and need from service providers:

  1. Explanations and education about your product or service intelligently delivered informing us why we should invest in your product.
  2. Options about what the trend of the service/product is … i.e. what’s its “shelf life”
  3. Engagement with us. We really want to mentor and help others not make the same mistakes we did. We may appear arrogant, but we’re not…we just don’t want to be ignored.
  4. We want you to know that we control over 70% of the disposal income in this country and we have lots of places to spend that money. We won’t spend it with companies that ignore us or call us aged or aging (even if we are both … you don’t need to remind us).
  5. Use clever and well thought out campaigns for marketing. Don’t be afraid to go mobile. Offer us deals and great products especially women’s clothing. We have lots of money to spend on clothing, but not many of us can wear a size 0 or show our midriffs.
  6. We are health conscience and not as worried about our sex lives as ads claim. Help us stay in shape and look good.
  7. Our pets are part of our family and we think they need stuff so we’ll splurge on them.
  8. Our parents are a huge part of our lives and we are taking care of them. Products and services that makes life easier for them and us will sell if treated in an intelligent way…. i.e. NO cold calling…form relationships with families.
  9. Reinvention and career services that help us stay on top of trends and technology are imperatives. We want to stay updated so we can talk to our children and grandchildren.
  10. We still care about changing the world and philanthropy. Get large numbers of us interested in a worthy causes. We fully understand that the earth’s resources are limited and alternative methods hold great returns

If you cater to baby boomers we will be loyal customers and clients. We will spread the word about how great you and your company are … and we’ll all be more successful.

Visit Jan online at Reinvention Chronicles.

9 Comments

  1. If only the world of sales, marketing and advertising would read this Boomet article. I spend my money where I feel appreciated for my age, not condemned for it. One more thing, don’t they realize I don’t want to be called “Sweety” or “Dear” just because I have white hair.

  2. Hi Jan- thank you for sharing your thoughts on “What Baby Boomers Want”. An excellent way of educating the business owners and I truly appreciate your candidness! By the way, at what point that do we start being curious about retiring or preparing for it? Is this even suppose to be in our vocabulary?

    Thanks Jan and take care!

  3. I think what baby boomers want is regulated health care. I’m an American who has been living in England for the last 30 years and the NHS has been beneficial in providing free doctor visits, free prescriptions (those who have a chronic disease such as Diabetes)

    Never knew much about greed until I visited my ageing mother who has to pay outlandish prices for her medication. Health care is America is profit-based and certainly not a utility concern for its patients.

  4. First of all, our age is advancing whether we pay attention or not. For me that means avoiding all the lifestyle choices which will make me “old”. And I don’t need some 20 or 30 something to help me figure it out.
    Second, I am totally disinterested in any marketing directed toward my age group. If I need something I will look until I find it, if it does exist. Otherwise I will make it myself. More than I don’t want to give in to aging I don’t want to be someone’s target market.
    I would change item #5 to “Avoid marketing campaigns for boomers. Create great products and make information about the products readily available. We will find it, trust us.”

    1. I totally agree with you Jim. If I want something I will look until I find it. I created an e-course to teach grandparents how to create and record their life stories because I wanted to preserve my mom’s stories and thought other people my age would like the program to preserve their own stories and that of their parents before they are lost. I am being constantly told by the marketing ‘gurus’ to find the pain point and market to that pain in my (baby boomer) niche, and to tweet it, fb it, blog it. . . the list goes on and on. I don’t want to do any of that because I don’t want to be on the receiving end of it. I know what I want and I will find it. I also know that I don’t have a ‘pain’ point for all the things I want to do. If I want to make a piece of jewelry, I’ll find a photo and make it, or a tutorial, and if I don’t find one I will go on with my life and not suffer because of it. Thank you for reminding me that others think and live like this as well.

  5. Thank you for this great read! I am a Gen-Xer and my mom was very angry at AARP fror sending her materials when she was 55. She said, “I’m not a damn senior citizen.” Boomers may wake up with aches and pains daily, like I do, but they certainly aren’t old. They never will be. They are revolutionaries at heart.

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