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Marketing to Baby Boomers

Welcomed into the world because of celebrations of the end of WWII and the Great Depression, baby boomers made up 40% of the population by 1964.

It’s not nearly as difficult as you may think, to target this fascinating generation of consumers. Baby Boomers have taken to the new age of technology rather well, and that’s primarily how marketers should be targeting them.

The 75 million baby boomers control 70% of the disposable income in the U.S. The spending of this generation is key to a strong economy, and many marketers are taking note.

bar chart - Average Hours

Where to Find Them

More than a quarter of boomers are spending 19+ hours online and watching TV each week. This generation is tech savvy, so targeting them online is key to reaching them. However, they also watch more TV than, say, millennials. So television mediums are a good way to reach baby boomers.

Though it might be expected, traditional marketing methods do not encourage baby boomers to buy or seek out more information online. Print ads and radio are not the most effective ways of reaching this audience. In fact, search, television, and email marketing are the best ways to target this demographic. 

How Are They Different?

While online marketing is the primary way to reach most generations of consumers (millennials, baby boomers, Gen X), they differ from other generations online.  

Studies show that millennials use their mobile phones most of the time, but baby boomers are still primarily using desktops to do research and make purchases. If you’re targeting baby boomers, mobile optimization is a much lower priority compared to targeting other generations.

Companies are obsessed with marketing to millennials and turning them into lifelong customers. However, marketers should be more focused on targeting baby boomers as most of the spending power comes from them, and in their retirement, they are willing to spend their money. They spend primarily on travel, healthcare and fitness, pets, and other “luxury” categories.

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Duane “DJ” Sprague is a conversion rate expert, a Certified Behavioral Design Coach by the Online Influence Institute, and a certified expert by the Behavioral Design Academy, the Mindworx Academy, and the Interaction Design Institute. As CMO of a billion-dollar national franchise, he leveraged the power of social proof and online reviews to improve SEO and accelerate growth, as he developed and managed a comprehensive online reputation management strategy that spanned nearly 200 websites. He has written for Forbes, Small Biz Daily, and several industry trade magazines, contributed to several books and university course packs, and is quoted in the Los Angeles Times as a subject matter expert. He holds a master’s degree in Integrated Marketing Communication and has received the 1st Place Gold Award in a global integrated marketing competition. Duane is the CMO of Shopper Approved, where he works with thousands of ecommerce websites to improve their SEO and CRO.

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