Many brands ignore the baby boomer generation as this generation are considered set in their way and entrenched in their brands of choice.
Baby Boomers (consumers born between 1946 - 1964) are often described as individual, independent and not afraid to challenge the norm. In fact, the older boomers who celebrated their 70th birthday last year are considered the most rebellious of generations.
75 million people in the US belong to the Baby Boomer generation, and only 5% of marketing budgets are used to target this consumer group.
According to CrowdTwist’s “Capturing Loyalty Across the Generations" 2015 loyalty program report”, 46.4% of Baby Boomers are very loyal to their favorite brands with only 17.1% willing to change brands.
This is despite the fact that Boomers experience various life events, such as making career changes or moving to a new home. As a result, their attitudes and needs evolve. They begin to re-evaluate their brands of choice and have an expectation that their brands will deliver exceptional value.
Baby boomers have higher disposable income than other generations and many are delaying retirement for greater financial freedom and continued interest in working. They are interested in new products and technology with over 70% actively using Facebook.
They embraced loyalty and consumer engagement programmes. 85% actively participate in one or more loyalty programmes.
However, they are very clear on what they want from their loyalty programmes:
- Save Money
- Earn rewards
- Receive member-only benefits
- To be treated as VIP
- Learn more about new products
The benefit and rewards are a key consideration for this generation.
However, boomers will abandon a loyalty programme if:
- The rewards aren’t compelling or relevant
- They have to wait too long to accumulate points
- There aren’t enough ways to earn points
- The program is too complicated
Interestingly, 48.1% would like to earn points for greater engagement such as taking a survey, visiting a website, sharing content and even writing a product review.
So how do loyalty managers win the loyalty battle with baby boomers?
To engage these older demographic, brands should consider the following:
1. Be Relevant with the Baby Boomer Audience
Companies should craft meaningful messages and engage consumers with products and services that speak to their needs.
2. Keep Loyalty programmes simple and easy to navigate
Nothing will deter baby boomers more from participating in an overly complex program. Make it easy for boomers to register, earn and burn their rewards.
3. Demonstrate value continuously throughout the loyalty programme
Keep customers interested and engaged in the programme. Brands must show baby boomers how they can benefit from the program and why their products and services help enhance their lifestyles.
4. Offer exceptional customer service to maintain loyalty
By treating customers well and going above and beyond their expectations for quality service, brands can create lasting relationships that will cement loyalty.
5. Feature engagement- based activities in loyalty programmes
Boomers prefer to engage with brands doing the things they enjoy most, such as taking surveys, visiting websites, and reading emails. To drive greater loyalty and heighten brand perception, brands should tap into the activities that boomers enjoy doing and reward them for their efforts.
Baby Boomers are loyal to their brands, but they don’t believe in loyalty for loyalty’s sake. They can be a hard demographic to win over. However, once that loyalty is won, they’ll remain loyal until the very end, which is a huge victory for any brand.