Generational Marketing


One of the key elements that every marketer has to get right is to target each demographic category using a suitable medium and an appropriate message. With so many new channels of communication available nowadays, the job of finding the best one is becoming increasingly difficult.


You don’t have to be an expert to realize that the elderly are less likely to be targeted using social media, though the number of users from such age category is increasing steadily. Similarly, Millennials are less likely to respond to old-fashioned paper ads.


So, what is it that we have to take into account when choosing how to target people from different age groups?


Baby Boomers

Those born after WWII still like to leave and check their voice mails, although an increasing number of them are now using Facebook for example, primarily to share and comment on pics posted by their children and grandchildren. They are usually slightly intimidated by modern technology, but don’t be fooled! They’re also quite ready to pay a lot to have the latest gadget.


Since they’re less open to changes, they like to remain loyal to particular brands. If there’s just a rumor that their favorite shampoo or tea will change their formula, they’ll probably rush to the nearest store and stock up. So, if you convince them that your product or service is of excellent quality, affordable and necessary, you’ll gain the most loyal customers you can find.


Another option they are likely to respond to is an opportunity of getting gift cards at places that offer a cash-back program. The best way to offer such options to baby boomers is to talk to them, either at a store or on the phone, but make sure you don’t call during lunchtime or too late, since your attempt will be seen as intrusive.


Generation X

Those born between 1965 and 1980 are now at the peak of their careers, with most of them having already sorted out their home-ownership issues. They are possibly busier than people from other age categories, since they have so many obligations, but you can count on them being online most of the time.


This generation remembers the time when you had to go to a store to get something, but are also quite happy to embrace the benefits of online shopping. If you reach them via email, your message is likely to be noticed immediately, either at work or at home, on a phone or a desktop computer.


These people are the greatest advocates of organically produced, locally and ethically produced products. In addition, even though they like to save up, they are also ready to splurge on things like vacations and they like to plan it well in advance. So, if you can offer anything that can be used by families on vacation, this is your target group.



Those born after Generation X, but before 21st century are those who rule the world of social media and pop culture. Since they began entering the workforce after the global economic crisis, the highest number of entrepreneurs belong to this age category.


They are the least likely to walk to a grocery store, yet most likely to spend a lot when they shop. When it comes to spending, they value friends’ recommendations, online opportunities and the easiness of the complete shopping experience. You might interest them in anything that is new, groundbreaking or different.


This generation will most likely dine out at a place where a friend of theirs has dined and posted a pic of their meal. If you want to attract them, you need to be skillful at using social media. According to research, almost two thirds of millennials would be more likely to “check-in” to a business on social channels if they would receive a coupon or discount.


However, there is another, much older channel of communication they is worth exploring and that is the radio. 93% of millennials listen to the radio for around 11 hours per week, which is more than Gen Xers or Baby Boomers, with podcasts being the favorite category.


So, as you can see, there are some characteristics shared by most members of different age group, but you need to be aware that there are no universal solutions, which are 100 percent successful. Demographic targeting is important if you want to maximize your return on investment of both money and time and, hopefully, these tips will help you achieve your goals more easily.



Emma Miller is a Sydney based writer with a degree in marketing. Interested in digital marketing, social media, start-ups and latest trends. She’s a contributor at Bizzmark blog.