Marketing is a challenge for any business. Not only can it be difficult, but it can also be expensive if not approached correctly. One of the greatest challenges in marketing is effectively reaching the group of consumers you want to promote your product or service too. When developing your company’s product or services, you should already have an idea of who your target consumer is, because not all respond to marketing in the same fashion. Knowing your target market is the first step to an effective marketing campaign.
Baby Boomers are the group of people born post World War II from 1946-1964 and are recorded as one of the largest generations in history. Baby Boomers were the first to experience TV and kick started the push towards new technology. A mostly retired group of consumers today; this generation has redefined the way people enjoy their free time. While outbound marketing tactics will work for consumers in this target audience, others react better to online marketing and television advertising. Preferring to shop online, they like doing so from their laptop or tablet, not mobile devices. According to Forbes, Baby Boomers are spending up to 11 hours online daily.
Generation X are those born from 1965-1980. Raised by the Baby Boomers, this generation is said to be guarded, unconvinced, and self-sufficient. Smaller in numbers, these consumers have a great deal of spending power. With their ability to use technology well and their loyalty to brands, Generation X is an important group to be reaching. While preferring online marketing, they have a thirst for data, so give them all the information they need. While statistics show that Gen X consumers are using their smart phones quite a bit, they are using it for lighter, quicker-access activities such as checking the weather, and using their laptop for more complex tasks. This group is all about honesty, genuineness, and legitimacy, so make sure that your advertising is unique and authentic.
Generation Y (Millennials)
The most confusing and misunderstood generation, Millennials are those born from 1981-2000 otherwise known as America’s next great generation. Making up nearly 25% of the population, Generation Y is the most coveted group of consumers today. This group grew up with readily available technology so they want what they want quick, and they want it up-to-date. When marketing to Millennials, you will best find the largest number of them on social media, and they want you as a business to be social with them. They constantly crave interaction and want to be a part in creating something. With information, readily available, Millennials cannot be fooled; they will not give your advertisement attention if it’s profit-driven or not original. They want something that will make them laugh or pertaining to a cause they find important. They also don’t want to see the same message over and over.
Generation Z (Boomlets)
Generation Z or the Boomlets, are the kids born after 2001 and considering these are only kids, you might imagine they don’t have much spending power. But that is not true. Per Marketing Teacher, $51 billion a year is spent by this generation and an additional $170 billion is spent by their parents. Each child in this group was born with a smart phone in hand and that’s where you can find these consumers: using apps, playing games, and browsing the internet. Their greatest desires? Entertainment and responsiveness.
Every generation has different consumer habits, but through learned behavior, advancing technology, and social norms, their habits are becoming more similar every day. Your product may have multiple target consumers or it may focus on just one, but the most important thing is to recognize who your target audience is, so you can effectively plan your strategies for each unique group.