Marketing to Different Generations - Social Media & Digital Marketing

Understanding how to market to different generations is essential when you’re planning your social media marketing campaign. No two generations are the same, they all have different buying behaviours and expectations. Whether you’re selling a product or service which is age-specific or something that spans generations, it’s crucial to understand your audience.

Baby Boomers, Generation X, Millennials and Generation Z speak different languages, have individual perspectives, and consume content in different ways. Being conscious of this will help your brand become more responsive to your customers’ needs, resulting in a trusting relationship and increased engagement. 

Baby-Boomers (1946-1964)

Characteristics

There’s an assumption that Baby-Boomers are “old-school” and not tech savvy, but thinking this way as a marketer can lead to missed opportunities. Baby-Boomers have only just recently been overtaken by Millennials as the biggest generation, and they actually make up 75% of the wealth in the US. 

They appreciate both traditional and 21st century marketing, and are generally comfortable using text messaging and other basic apps, however they do usually prefer computers over mobile devices. They are very loyal, especially to brands they have known and used all their lives, and use social media for very social purposes, such as keeping in touch with family.

Baby-Boomer Marketing Tips

Even though Baby-Boomers didn’t grow up with Google, they sure are making up for lost time. A massive 96% of Baby-Boomers use Search Engines, making SEO an absolute must when planning to market to them. Moreover, Baby-Boomers actually make 20% more online purchases than Millennials. When marketing to Baby-Boomers, you should prioritise SEO and the user experience of your website. 

It may be a good idea to focus on Facebook when planning your social media marketing strategy for Baby-Boomers. This generation loves Facebook, mostly for connecting with loved ones, but also for keeping informed. However, you might want to avoid retargeting as they are more likely to feel like their privacy is being invaded.

Generation X (1965-1980)

Characteristics

Generation X make up 31% of all purchasers and have the highest annual disposable household income, meaning they really hold extensive purchasing power. The majority are busy professionals with families so they don’t have time to explore social media in the same way as younger audiences do. Saying that, they actually spend more time per week online than Boomers and Millennials – 21 hours on their smartphone, 9 hours on their PC and 4 hours on their tablets. 

More than any other, Generation X likes to research before they buy something online. They read more reviews and love a discount or coupon. They’re your strongest online brand advocates, commonly talking about their favourite and least favourite products. 

Generation X Marketing Tips

A fantastic marketing tactic with Generation X is nostalgia. Tap into their childhood memories with music throwbacks, nostalgic advertisements and historical, noteworthy events. It could be worth integrating this nostalgia into your ads, social media posts and other marketing efforts if you want to communicate with them.

Generation X is known to be very brand loyal so make sure to build brand trust. Loyalty schemes can work really well, as well as offering loyalty points or rewards schemes. It could even result in them advocating for your brand in return. 

Millennials (1981-1996)

Characteristics

Millennials are generally well-educated, very tech-savvy and quick to adopt new technologies. They’re currently seeking financial stability as they hold more debt than any other generation, but are on their way to holding greater buying power. They are also very socially conscious, researching companies before purchasing to ensure their values are aligned. Millennials want to make a difference in the world and tend to be green consumers that seek to make ethical buying choices. 

Millennials are influenced by their peers when it comes to making purchases and respond well to influencer marketing. They don’t like being marketed to and are generally distrustful of advertising. They appreciate honesty and integrity. 

Millennial Marketing Trends

Millennials want to be part of the creation process so it’s valuable to encourage user-generated content. Get them talking about your brand to generate an organic, largely self-sustaining buzz! They are actually the biggest followers of this method, with 84% saying that user-generated content at least somewhat influences their buying decisions.

Marketing to Different Generations - Millennials Trust Pilot Reviews

When marketing to this generation, you may want to consider tapping into the influencer market. Their distrust in traditional advertising techniques makes them more likely to react positively to influencer marketing. They’re actually 44% more likely to trust influencers than brand claims made through traditional ad campaigns.

Generation Z (1997-2010)

Characteristics

When marketing to Generation Z, time is of the essence. They reportedly have the shortest attention span of only 8 seconds. If content doesn’t pique their interest within this time, they’ll likely click off. They grew up with smartphones and social media, so they expect businesses to work well on mobile. Gen Z are twice as likely to convert on mobile, so if your website is too difficult to use and too slow, you’ll be missing out on a lot of conversions. 

Like Millennials, Gen Z have a growing dislike for blatant advertising and will likely react better to influencers than more traditional forms of marketing. 

Generation Z Marketing Trends

Looking at TikTok’s amazing boom in popularity over the past year, it’s clear that Generation Z love short-form video and are looking to be entertained. Keeping up-to-date with the latest memes and TikTok references may be a good way of communicating with Gen Z, but ensure you’re using them correctly. There’d be nothing worse than referring to a meme that died a year ago! It’s important to keep your brand’s tone of voice but be somewhat unpredictable. If you have a funny response to a customer on social media, you might find that it goes viral, driving sales and engagement.

If you’re in need of a bit of help when it comes to tailoring your social media strategy for your target audience, contact the Victress team today. You can book a free consultation to talk through your brand’s goals and start laying the groundwork for a successful, well-rounded social media marketing strategy.

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