Baby Boomers’ Mind-Blowing Wealth And Spending Habits Missed By Marketers
The Baby Boomer generation includes anyone who was born between 1944 and 1964. It’s a generation that has captured the attention of online retailers, investment firms, hotels, airlines, and just about any other business you can think of, and it’s easy to understand why – they represent an enormous opportunity. The problem is, marketers are not doing a very good job reaching Boomers.
There are 75 million U.S. Baby Boomers that are either retired or are close to retiring. They’ve had lots of time to accumulate wealth and as a group and as a result, they have a mind-blowing combined buying power of over $2.5 TRILLION dollars. That’s not to say that all Boomers are wealthy – they’re not. But as a generation, on average, they are likely the wealthiest of all time.
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Boomers Are Spending More Online Than Ever Before
Contrary to popular opinion, Baby Boomers are not technophobes – not even close. The Boomer generation has moved online for purchases ranging from groceries to automobiles. A recent study by Visa showed that over 40% of Boomer spending occurs online. Any business that has an online presence needs to take data like that very seriously. Some are but many are not and they’re missing a huge opportunity.
What Are Baby Boomers Spending Their Money On?
Boomers are buying a wide range of products online but the part that has some online retailers salivating is that their average purchase is over $200. They’re buying healthcare products like cough and alert meds, household goods and appliances like TVs and barbeques, and lots of cosmetics. On top of that, Baby Boomers are spending a lot of money on luxury items. For example, over 80% of Chanel sales are to Boomers.
The vast majority of Baby Boomers are healthy and active. They travel, buy all kinds of “stuff” for themselves, and for their grown kids, and dare we say their “grandkids?” On top of that, although they are savvy shoppers with 46% of them taking advantage of Cyber Monday deals during the holidays, Baby Boomers aren’t cheap and they are very loyal to brands that deliver!
BoomerBuyerGuides.com is taking the Baby Boomers and their enormous buying power very seriously. They’re discussing and reviewing products and services that Boomers actually want and will pay for – not just the products that are normally associated with old people.
And remember that $2.5 trillion Boomers have in the bank? They’re not leaving it as an inheritance for their kids. They’re spending it on life. Not in a greedy way though – Baby Boomers are generally very generous and giving toward their families and they’re among the biggest supporters of non-profit organizations.
Why Are So Many Marketers Treating Boomers With Such Disregard?
So why are so many businesses getting this wrong? A recent article in FastBusiness begins this way: “Ads geared toward older consumers tend to be condescending at best, offensive at worst.” That kind of sums up how marketers treat this market.
For example, when you think about TV ads you’ve seen that target “seniors,” what comes to mind? Tom Sellick talking about reverse mortgages, Pat Boone promoting safe bathtubs, or an attractive 40 something woman discussing erectile dysfunction medications, right? Or, and you have to reach back a bit for this one but it’s a classic ad for seniors…“I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!”
It’s as if marketers view Baby Boomers as old people who only need old people products. And that’s so far from the truth!
Baby Boomer Spending Habits Summary
- There are 75 million U.S. Baby Boomers that are either retired or are close to retiring
- Baby Boomers have a combined buying power of over $2.5 TRILLION dollars.
- Over 40% of Boomer spending occurs online
- The average online purchase made by Baby Boomers is over $200
- Top product categories for Boomers include healthcare products, household goods, and cosmetics.
- Baby Boomers are spending a lot of money on luxury items. For example, over 80% of Chanel sales are to Boomers.
- The vast majority of Baby Boomers are healthy and active, not sedentary, and sick.
- Rather than leaving all of their money to their children after they die, Baby Boomers are spending their money on their families while they’re still around to enjoy it.