Boomers, Gen X and the Digital Marketing Landscape

by | Jul 24, 2020 | Marketing | 0 comments

The first time I heard the phrase “OK, boomer”, my 16-year-old son said it to me. I was displeased. First of all, I am not from the Baby Boomer generation. I’m firmly in the lesser talked about, far more cynical, Gen-X.

For those unfamiliar, the “boomer” generation is made up of individuals born between 1946 and 1964. Wyatt classified me with this incorrect term presumably because I said something old-fashioned, or perhaps I had trouble working the 97 remotes we need for the TV, DVR, BlueRay, Streaming subscriptions confoundment that is our television.

What’s in a name?

Generally speaking? Not a lot. From a marketing standpoint? Everything.

As the Chief Marketing Officer for Gravity Junction, LLC it’s my job to identify consumer groups and determine the best ways to sell them the products or services of our clients. How the different generations consume media and their consumer behavior varies pretty wildly from the “boomer” generation down through the most recent addition, Gen Z (those born between 1995-2015).

There are luddites among us!

Our baby boomers exhibit various degrees of skill level when it comes to technology. A fair amount have worked with computers in their careers and they’ve adapted well to smartphones, and all forms of digital communication. A large majority, while they’ve absolutely adapted to technology where it was fairly mandatory, reject a lot of today’s electronic trappings. My dad, for example, pretty much refuses to text. He’s 70 years old, and is firmly a boomer. He loves the internet, and uses it prolifically for research and entertainment. But text him? If you want no response, go ahead. Sigh. OK, boomer.

Necessity is the mother of, well, change!

As my partner, Sharla and I traverse the proposals and onboarding that comes with the new clients we work with, we also encounter multiple generations. Broadly speaking, our clients are tremendously technically savvy. They’ve adapted extremely well to the world-wide-web and even if they aren’t quite up to date, they know they should be. They are smart too. They’ve learned that to really excel in business it’s important to stay in your lane. Wearing too many hats might help you make small talk about all types of topics when you’re stuck at the Denver airport (again). Actually trying to do everything yourself generally just results in most everything being done subparly. This is also known as spreading yourself too thin.

We love our clients.

Where we run into trouble is when our client is squarely in the boomer generation but their target market is Gen Z. We then have to suggest tactics that appeal to people who were deftly using an iPhone at age 2. The solutions to customer retention, or empty carts, or even for answering Facebook Messenger at 3am do not seem appropriate. It’s in these moments that Sharla and I take stock, and realize that we have adapted in short order to the digital marketing space because it is our job. If we were in another industry, we might resist too.

Selling online requires some “techiness”.

The fact remains, no matter your generation … if you are trying to sell anything in today’s increasingly digital world, it’s important to be open to all of the avenues people will take to find you. If you cut off Yelp, you’ll lose business from the avid Yelp user who finds your competitor there. While it seems difficult to “be everywhere” and more difficult to manage it all, it’s a large part of the service we provide at Gravity Junction. While you may not need an active marketing strategy or campaign for every single directory or social platform available, your inclusion in their list ensures to Google that you’re more legitimate than those who do not bother to take this step.

So Boomers, Gen Xers, Zoomers, and all the counterparts, take heed, WE GET IT. It’s a pain to keep up. So much so, that we created a page on our website called “The Pulse” just to give you a high level overview of what’s changing week to week. Yes, that’s right, week to week … or honestly, day-to-day.

Should you require some help managing all the social channels, the algorithm changes, the software requirements to run your business effectively, we can help.

Contact us to see how we can help!

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