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How to market to Boomers?

saxmanstevesaxmansteve subscriber Posts: 5
edited July 2007 in Boomers Back in Business
This category seems awful quiet for a forum set up for the fastest growing
start up generation, so I thought I`d set a ball rolling, asking boomers for
their opinion as to how best to market to boomers.

Ever since rock and roll we`ve been an independent lot and my guess is the
older we get, the more independent we get. This means the marketing guys
have real trouble deciding how to catch our attention.

So what is the best way to get new messages across to boomers, and
persuade them to try something new?


  • bertbert subscriber Posts: 12
    O.K. Saxmansteve and Raisecapital02 or any others at SuN, Craig and I have outlined the demographics of most boomers.  I have a Boomer Widget I want to sell to boomers, how would you market to this group?
  • saxmanstevesaxmansteve subscriber Posts: 5

    actually I kicked this off because I`m interested in marketing to boomers,
    have some ideas and keen to get more.

    For the record I`m right in the "not done yet" boomer bracket with you,
    and trying to do something really modern in a market where the boomers
    are the people making it happen.

    I don`t think these people get influenced much by advertising or direct
    sales. To my mind their only influences are people they know - family,
    friends, people they do business with or members of the same networks.

    Gladwell explains in the Tipping Point the role of Morvens - people who
    stay in touch with what`s happening and pass on the good news to the
    guys who don`t.

    So the answer would seem to be viral marketing and there needs to be
    something in the product/service which drives the passing of the
    message.   The question is how to kick it off and interest enough people
    to get to the tipping point. Seems to me readers of Start up Nation are
    mostly in the Morven category and so are better placed to know how they
    can be reached.

    Understanding this better will certainly help me and probably a lot of
    other readers here.

    The stats we saw in the original post for this forum show us boomers
    starting their own businesses is a phenomena which, along with other
    things, will bring big changes to the business world, and opportunities
    for all of us - it we can figure it out.
  • bertbert subscriber Posts: 12
    I agree that viral marketing is one good approach and I agree with everything else you are saying too.  It is my opinion that boomers can see a sales pitch coming a mile off and will throw up walls to block it immediately.  I have also feel that some of our current low unemployment statistics (when there has been so many layoffs) is because boomers would rather start a business of their own than collect unemployment.  Regardless how risky the new business they start would be.  Yes, this is a tough group to market to because they are in self-preservation mode.
  • saxmanstevesaxmansteve subscriber Posts: 5

    thanks for that.

    Seems to me the way to get to boomers is to put them in control.

    They`re responsible people who understand hard work and expect it to
    make life better. That`s the way most of us were brought up and we still
    want to define our world, for ourselves, and for others.

    Over the last few years other generations have done what they can to
    marginalise us, but it hasn`t worked. We`re still the "My Generation"

    I guess most of us plan to keep doing it. 60 is the new 40, and when we
    get there 70 will be the new 40.

    Sounds coooool to me!
  • bertbert subscriber Posts: 12
    A good example is the iPhone.  I feel like I should want one from all the talk and advertising but when I think about it, all I really just want is a phone.  I don`t want to take a $600 iPod/Computer/U-Tube/Blackberry/Phone with me when workout.  I worry enough about my $199 iPod Nano.  Where do you buy a cell phone that just makes calls and isn`t so expensive that I am afraid to take it with me where ever I go?  I think this is boomer logic and the marketing needs to fit this thought process.
  • CookieCookie subscriber Posts: 2
    Bert Gladwell explains in the Tipping Point the role of Morvens - people who stay in touch with what`s happening and pass on the good news to the guys who don`t.
    I believe Gladwell refers to those who accumulate knowledge as Mavens not Morvens.
    To get me to open my wallet these days, it has to be something I really need or want.  I`m sick of "stuff" & am trying to simplify my life by lightening up.  Viral marketing, in my opinion, does work though.  When friends tell me about a product they like that tastes better, is easier to use.... I`m more apt to at least check it out. 
  • saxmanstevesaxmansteve subscriber Posts: 5
    Cookiethanks very much for the correction - Mavens it isMust be I`m getting old
  • bertbert subscriber Posts: 12
    There is some pretty good demographics in this post.  (OK one-sided but lets pretend...) Now Saxmansteve, how you would market to this group?
  • saxmanstevesaxmansteve subscriber Posts: 5
    Thanks Bert

    I figure the only that consistently influences boomers is the advice and
    guidance they get from family and friends.
    So to my mind viral is the only way.

  • bertbert subscriber Posts: 12
  • saxmanstevesaxmansteve subscriber Posts: 5
    Thanks Bert

    now the question is "how to do it". I guess the answer is we have to let our
    experience do the talking for us.
  • candlelady2candlelady2 subscriber Posts: 1
    I agree with all of the above ideas.
    Please remember that some of us "boomers" may feel a little bewildered when presented with a widget that is high tech.....If you can present it to me simply, I would be more likely to buy it. KEEP IT SIMPLE!  Even if it`s not!
    I know this does not apply to everyone, but believe it or not some of our group feel as though they could not learn to use a computer, complicated cell phones or high tech widgets! It has nothing to do with intelligence, but more to do with a certain fear or intimidation of learning something new! I hope I`m making sense.....if not just humor me!  
    Ten years ago someone gave me their old computer. It sat here for five months, I didn`t even try to turn it on, until finally a friend sat down with me and taught me the very basics......well after a lot of trial and error here I am and barely made it through vacation without a computer! No laptop yet. 
    Well, that`s my two cents for now! I`m still thinking about it.
  • saxmanstevesaxmansteve subscriber Posts: 5
    candlelady2thanks very much for the input.Oh so true yet very hard to do - but I`m working on itSteve
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