Baby Boomers: Changing the World – One Life Stage at a Time

Posted on: October 10th, 2014 by Rob Baumhover

 

HME Retailers,

Ever since they were old enough to have their voices heard, Baby Boomers have changed the world as they’ve aged. This massive generation, united by the civil rights movements, drafting lotteries, and rock and roll, have greatly influenced American society by ending a war, creating a new culture of values, and transforming the style, politics and pop-culture of their time. They’ve remodeled much of our culture as they’ve grown older, including the academic system, business environments, and family dynamics. And now they’ll change the face of retirement.

With this sector of the population becoming an ever-growing, key target market for the HME industry, it’s important to know how they will change and shape our industry in the decades to come.

1.Changes in buying habits:

According to the US Government Consumer Expenditure Survey, Baby Boomers outspend other generations by an estimated $400 billion each year on consumer goods and services. This generation is more interested in experiences than possessions. When helping a Baby Boomer find the right product, it’s important to think about what they can do with the product, rather than the features of the product itself.

2.Changes to where and how they age:

More than the generations before them, Baby Boomers are concerned about staying healthy, remaining in their homes, and having their health care tailored to their needs. An AARP study showed that over 80% of those aged 45+ say they want to remain in their own homes, even when they’ll need assistance. Use this to your advantage when marketing and talking with customers. Consider messages and conversations that provoke a sense of independence and empowerment.

3.Changes in generational characteristics:

The Baby Boomer generation will change the way we characterize older age groups in our society. In previous decades, it was safe to assume that a 50-year-old male had grown children, potentially with kids of their own, and worked a steady job he’d held for years. Now, a 50-year-old male could be a first-time parent or a grandparent. He could be in senior management, or just starting out as an entrepreneur. In coming decades, it’ll be increasing important to think about ways to gather information about your specific audience and their lifestyles, in order to prioritize your customer segments and reach them in meaningful ways, with the right products.