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Marketing to Multiple Generations

By: Darlene Fiske
Posted: June 16, 2008, from the August 2006 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

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Born between the early part of the 20th century and the end of World War II, retired clients are the parents of baby boomers. One interesting fact about this segment is that its members are more active in chat rooms and on message boards than baby boomers. This may be a result of their desire to connect with family and friends, as well as to keep people up-to-date on their health and other developments, according to the new study “U.S. Adults: Word of Mouth Communications,” from Lucid Marketing.

As this market ages, another interesting trend emerges: returning to college. Universities are actively recruiting seniors back to campus, offering housing and other perks normally enjoyed by faculty and staff. In fact, more than 580,000 adults age 65 and older plan on taking college courses, and 165,000 of them are 75 or older, according to Bob Jordan, president of International Demographics, Inc.

This generation is hungry for knowledge and human interaction. Offering cooking classes, birding excursions or other experiential-type activities will appeal to retirees. Although taking care of themselves and staying healthy never have been more important, engaging their minds will best deliver what these clients want.

Targeting the generations

Aiming your marketing efforts to specific generations is not only smart, it’s efficient and will provide the best return on your marketing investment. The way in which you choose to spend that money to reach them is up to you. The options are endless. Get to know your clients and your most loyal customers. This will give you insights into how and why they make the decision to purchase your services and products. Marketing to multiple generations can be highly profitable if you are strategic and use communication methods that are specific to each group’s needs and lifestyles.