Increase customer response with age-appropriate, relevant generational marketing.
The average person sees thousands of marketing messages every day. When the stack of mail lands on their kitchen counters, how do you make sure they pay attention to yours? Targeted, relevant content! One of the most effective ways to do this is targeting by generation.
It’s often said that “age is just a number,” and to some extent, that’s true. Americans are living longer, living healthier, and staying more active than ever. Many couples are delaying having children until later in life, and many older Americans are remaining in the workforce far beyond retirement age. The traditional lines are blurring.
At the same time, most people in any given age demographic are experiencing similar life stages that help you target messaging more effectively. For example, buyers in their early 20s are just getting started in their careers and are less likely to be married with children. You will speak to them differently than you will buyers in their 40s and 50s who are likely mid-career, with greater earning power, and whose children are starting to leave the home.
So while age may be “just a number,” that number has meaning, too.
It’s not just life stage that defines the characteristics of a generation. Each has also been influenced by the cultural, political, and economic times around them. The result is that they will respond differently to different headlines, body copy, incentives, and calls to action.
Just look at the differences between Boomers and Gen Z, for example:
• Boomers grew up in the age of Woodstock and the Cold War. Gen Z has grown up in the age of Sandy Hook and Uvalde.
• Boomers grew up in a time when “going to work” meant sitting in an office. Gen Z has grown up in a time when it means sitting in Starbucks.
• Boomers lived through the technological evolution from black-and-white television to cellphones. Gen Z has never known life without SnapChat.
• Boomers grew up during the Cold War. The first member of Gen Z wasn’t born until six years after 9/11.
• Boomers witnessed the civil rights movement, women’s empowerment, and the moon landing. Gen Z is immersed in sustainability, social and political justice, and diversity.
With such divergence in perspectives and experiences, it’s clear why it’s important to think about generational differences as you craft your messaging. Do your research before putting pen to paper (so to speak). The result will be deeper engagements with each of your audience segments, leading to increased trust, and ultimately, better results.
| Last Updated: 20 October 2022