Boomers and two other groups retailers want to impress

We’ve run our share of stories on BoomerCafé over the years about retailers all but ignoring baby boomers in their marketing campaigns… as if we just don’t matter. So we’re glad to see that things are changing. That’s why we’re happy to run this story by Ashley Lutz, the retail editor of, about Three Groups Retailers Are Desperately Trying To Impress (and guess which one comes first!).

For years, retailers have put most of their stock in Generation X, people in their mid-30s and mid-40s.

But consumer demographics in America are changing rapidly, and major retailers are scrambling to catch up.

Baby Boomers, Hispanics, and millennials are the three groups retailers should be —
and are — targeting, according to a recent report by McKinsey.

Here’s why retailers are rushing to impress these groups.

Veteran actor Jonathan Goldsmith portrays "The Most Interesting Man in the World."

Veteran actor Jonathan Goldsmith portrays “The Most Interesting Man in the World.”

Baby Boomers

This generation is a source of big spending growth among several major categories, including food and housewares, according to McKinsey. Boomers actually have money to spend— controlling 70% of disposable income in the U.S.

Amazon launched a website for customers over 50 last year that highlights everything from vitamins to easy-to-use electronic tablets. Beer maker Dos Equis has seen success in this demographic space with its “Most Interesting Man In The World” commercials, featuring veteran actor Jonathan Goldsmith.

And after Proctor & Gamble realized that Baby Boomers often saw their pets as children, it began offering more premium pet food, according to Bloomberg.


Hispanics will double retail spending in the next two years, according to McKinsey. Bloomberg reports that the demographic will spend $1.5 trillion on U.S. goods and services by 2015.

To appeal to the Hispanic market, Macy’s has started offering more brightly-colored clothing. Meanwhile, K-Mart launched a fashion line with actress Sofia Vergara.

Target told the New York Times last year that it was going to start carrying Mexican groceries in key markets.



This group will account for one-third of retail spending by 2020, according to McKinsey. Millennials, defined as 24- to 37-year-olds, have proved to be tricky for retailers.

“Every store in the world is literally in millennials’ pockets; they can hang out with their friends, sip lattes, and shop online— all at the same time,” expert Robin Lewis wrote on his blog.

To capitalize on millennials’ obsession with fitness, athlete-focused brands like Under Armour, Nike, and Lululemon have expanded their offerings. Fast food brand Wendy’s is offering more healthy and premium menu items.

Macy’s also launched a series of fashion lines to appeal to the younger generation.

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