Are online marketers ignoring boomers?

Baby Boomers are the Web’s largest constituencyThey make up over 30% of US internet users. They spend 16 hours per week watching T.V. and 19 hours per week online. (Google/Ipsos). In addition a DMN3 survey of online Boomers found that 96.1% of use search, while 94.8% of Boomers use email. They often use the Internet to research health and wellness information, as well as plan and book leisure trips. (DMN3). So why are online marketers concentrating on Millennials?

Consider this, Boomers contribute more positive online product reviews than other generational groups. They contribute 45% of the total online product opinions and assign 3% more five-star ratings. (Bazaarvoice). Boomers also love Facebook. An astonishing 84.9% of Boomers said they use Facebook. (DMN3).

One of the biggest misconceptions about marketing and advertising to Baby Boomers and seniors is that social media and online marketing and advertising only appeal to a narrow, niche and much younger crowd. While it is true that teenagers and young adults are often the first to adopt new technology and online platforms, the Baby Boomer and senior generations are never far behind.

In fact, at more than 110 million strong, combined Baby Boomers and seniors represent the single largest consumer group in America , spending more than $7 billion online every year. These customers currently make up one-third of all online and social media users, with more than 8 million individuals spending more than 20 hours a week online and growing.

If you think mobile marketing is limited to millennials and Generation X, think again. 89% of boomers have a cellphone, and 13% have completely ditched their landline. Boomers are 5 times as likely as the general population to own an iPad or other tablet.  Don’t limit your mobile messages to younger demographics when baby boomer marketing is increasingly mobile.

Boomers are 25% of the total population, $3 trillion of buying power but less than 5% of total ad dollars are targeted towards this group. According to a survey by Ad Age, many companies fear reaching out to boomers could age their brand.

The Internet hasn’t just impacted the way millennials and members of generation X shop, research and connect. It’s been responsible for a full revolution in the way Americans of all demographics make purchase decisions. If you’re convinced that baby boomer marketing should be limited to a traditional interruption strategy, it’s likely time to rethink your stance.

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