If you think that the place to reach Baby Boomers (born between 1946 – 1964) is anywhere that does not include technology, think again! Boomers in the U.S. are technology-savvy enough to comprise 1/3 of all TV viewers, online users, social media users and Twitter users.
If that’s not enough to make you think twice about where you’re putting your social media marketing dollars, consider that there are 78 million Boomers in the U.S., many who have “shown a willingness to try new brands and products.” In fact, they spend 38.5% of CPG dollars! (source: Nielsen). You can’t afford to overlook them!
Online is becoming the perfect place to reach Boomers. They are being neglected in brick-and-mortar retail stores which mostly cater to younger consumers — with low lighting, loud music, and young employees. This can easily be solved online, but few marketers are stepping up. We have a huge opportunity to meet Boomer needs online… this is the perfect time to start!
We do need to make sure, however, not to just “go after the money.” As with any social media marketing campaign, we need to take the time to build trust with our potential consumers. Boomers likely won’t buy a product just for the cool factor, and aren’t drawn into each new hyped product, so it is especially important to focus on building a relationship with them and activating Advocates who will not only recommend the product, but actively encourage their friends and family to try it.
With the Boomer audience in particular, our guiding principle needs to be “Make NO Assumptions!” Even if you are a Boomer, genuine relationship-based marketing requires that you make no assumptions.
Make NO assumptions about:
- Their needs, and/or how they want their needs to be addressed
- Their technical skills/experience
- Their preferences (re: products, services, online tools, marketing contact…)
- Their habits, relationships, work, etc., etc.
ASK first, LISTEN next, ASK again (for clarification), then ACT and INTEGRATE your learning. That is the sequence that builds genuine relationships, and what will build Boomers’ trust and turn them into Advocates. We have an untapped Boomer market waiting to be served online. How will you help fill that gap?
– Ted Rubin, Social Media Strategist