Continue Reading #2 Mature Marketing- TIME, VALUE, TRUST" />

#2 Mature Marketing- TIME, VALUE, TRUST

by Louis on January 17, 2009

Some traditional sales and marketing folks see boomers as a pain in the neck. They have taken the ‘me generation’ descriptions of stamp your foot spoiled brats who want more than they can afford and don’t care who it hurts to get it too much to heart . This is not a healthy attitude nor is it accurate. Boomers are careful consumers who want to be treated with respect. They deserve it. They are well educated and have income to spend.

Change is a constant in boomer’s lives. What was constant in our parent’s generation is no longer reliable. That goes for jobs, marriage and even friendship. The most recent economic downturn, outsourcing jobs around the world and the switch from print media to the web are examples of change in the workplace. Spiritual seeking, longevity and other factors have changed marriage from permanent to serial. Increasing mobility makes the prospect of lifelong friends harder than it was.

Women make most boomer purchasing decisions. Getting in tune to this fact is important. No less a retail giant then Best Buy is acting on it. These women are looking for ways to enhance and simplify their lives, all while staying connected and informed.

Trust is critical to boomer sales. The generation of multiple assassinations, the Viet Nam war and FBI excess, Watergate and even Monica Lewinsky is cautious about trusting anyone ‘in authority’. The up side is once trust is earned boomers are loyal. They love passing word of mouth referrals when they are comfortable their trust has been placed wisely. Be careful, meters are very sensitive. Never bullshit a boomer.

Boomers research before purchase. They find comfort in feeling well informed. Whether on the web, phone or real time spent shopping, boomers want to be thorough. They are not price shopping…they are more often value shopping. Many boomers are willing to spend more to get better. Though boomers may be savvy web researchers the result may be too much information. Too much information may lead to paralysis. They don’t have the experience or background to differentiate quality information, products or services in every field. Help your client determine which features are significant, when spending more or less is the smart course, how to get the best value in their purchase.

Time is always critical to boomers. Who said ‘multi-tasking’ before boomers came along? How to spend what time they have when not working, shlepping the kids, helping mom and dad or being a good citizen is a constant source of concern and often tension. If your product or service helps them get on their bike (boat, gym, theater, etc.) for an extra few minutes it is a winner.

Summary: Respect your client. Think in terms like filter, coach and editor to define your role. Have patience. The hard sell will undermine your position. You win the hearts of boomer consumers by establishing trust, filtering information giving clients confidence to buy value while saving their limited time to spend on other things.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Hoechstetter Interiors January 30, 2009 at 10:32 pm

Lewis, you are so right on with your observations about the needs and preferences of aging generations! Your insights into how this translates to marketing are invaluable, as are the rich variety of links you’ve provided in this and other posts. The nitty-gritty of products and codes and so on are important in the universal/accessible design/aging in place world, but you’re really hitting the nail on the head about the more important underlying social issues as well – so thank you, thank you, thank you!



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