Top Techniques for Selling to Baby Boomers

Sales Pro Source
September 7, 2012 — 982 views  
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There are upwards of 80 million baby boomers, or people who were born between 1946 and 1964, in the United States. Currently, they enjoy more than $2 trillion in annual spending power and possess more than 50 percent of the discretionary income in the country. Therefore, marketing to them effectively is important. A few of the top techniques for selling to baby boomers are highlighted below.

Don't Mention How Old They Are

The last thing the average baby boomer wants to be perceived as is old. This generation considers itself to be active, healthy and able to tackle health problems with ease. Marketing techniques need to reflect those points. Unlike with marketing to their parents, you need to tiptoe around the issue of age when marketing to baby boomers. Even if a product is specifically designed to address an age-related need, it should be marketed in a way that sidesteps the age question as much as possible.

Treat Them as Individuals

Although baby boomers are commonly lumped into one large group, the truth is that they expect to be treated as individuals. Ironically, it is best to avoid using the term "baby boomer" altogether when marketing to this demographic. The baby boomer generation itself is often split into two segments: leading-edge boomers, who were born between 1946 and 1955 and trailing-edge boomers, who were born between 1956 and 1964. To grab a boomer's attention, play up the fact that each person has specific needs and wants. If possible, offer customized products, services and solutions.

Play Up Luxury Options

Approximately 80 percent of the luxury goods that are sold in the U.S. each year are purchased by baby boomers. Therefore, it's smart to emphasize the premium aspects of a product or service. Many boomers have ample amounts of discretionary income, so they are more than willing to pay a premium for goods that are perceived to be upscale and luxurious. In other words, promoting the budget-friendly attributes of a product isn't the way to go when attempting to sell to this generation.

Take Advantage of Boomers' Willingness to Try New Things

More than 50 percent of baby boomers are active on social media sites like Facebook, and approximately 20 percent of the smartphones that are in use today are owned by boomers. Reaching out to them on mobile platforms and through social media marketing techniques is sure to pay off in the long run.

Sales Pro Source