|dollars (Photo credit: Tddy)|
And (surprise!) baby boomers care about a lot more than medications that help them feel younger and gadgets that allow them to call emergency services.
Is technology just for our kids? Data shows that 41% of those who purchase Apple computers (as I did when I left my job in Corporate America) are baby boomers. Some of us are even classified as “Techno Boomers” by Nielsen. With my bag full of cool gadgets, I count myself among those who qualify for that distinction.
According to a Forrester Report published in November 2011, boomers aged 56-66 spend the most online, followed by those aged 46-55. Only the oldest Americans spend less than Gen X (and slightly less than Gen Y) online.
Why then are these spenders seemingly invisible to marketers?
According to USA Today, “The traditional thinking among marketers is that older folks spend less, have little interest in new products and have brand preferences set in stone.”
I admit that I like what I like. But after 30+ years as a dedicated PC user, I am now a huge fan of Apple products. After swearing that I preferred paper books, I now read e-books on my Kindle and on my iPad. My preferences for clothing and home goods brands change from year to year, but are strongly influenced by loyalty programs and customer support.
I am turned off by surveys that request age, with the highest age category being 50+. I am happy to see young people manning the booths at trade fairs, conferences, and expos, but treat me the same way you treat the younger attendees, please.
Consider that the market segment aged 50+ is expected to grow 34% between now and 2030, while the 18-49 segment will grow much more slowly at 12%.
Product marketers, if you want to grow your market you must learn what the baby boomers want and how to talk to them, or you will be missing the boat.