I recently registered at an online website, which shall remain nameless, promising to survey me for various consumer studies. I did this so I could have a say on products and manufacturers. As a writer I was also interested in the results of the surveys for informational purposes.
I took the time to carefully complete the demographic form with my information, age, income, occupation, hobbies and interests, etc. This was relatively generic in that no specific personal information was taken such as name, address and phone.
The website in question is for a well-respected and trusted organization. They promote registration and being available for surveys and questions by offering discounts and prizes.
When I finished the form and submitted it, I received a message that they didn’t need me for any surveys at the present time. It seems they’re busy surveying the young generation, 18 to 35, for their consumer habits and opinions.
My generation, the baby boomers born between 1946 – 1964, who now make up over one-third of the population are of little or no interest to retailers. I find this incredible! Most boomers are not rich, but do have abundant disposable incomes. These same boomers are migrating to the internet and tech gadgets in mass numbers right now.
Boomers are using Facebook and other social network sites to keep in touch with children and grand-children around the world. They use computer tools to network with other boomers on health care, recreation, travel, relationship, and products and services.
I visited an Apple store a couple of weeks ago and was amazed to see a class in session on iPhone use. Almost all the attendees appeared to be of my generation, the boomers. When I questioned one of the associates, he told me seniors are buying technology in large numbers. They prefer to buy user-friendly products from retailers who offer training and support.
Although not a boomer, my mother began using the internet several years ago. She is now on Facebook following her children, grand-children and great-grand-children. Sellers are likely not interested in her though, because she is 85 years young. This amazing woman travels extensively on tours and cruises, not rich but certainly with a comfortable level of disposable income to enjoy her life. My brother, sister and myself who are all boomers are close to retirement or retired, have disposal income and all love gadgets and travel. Need I say more? The writing is on the wall.
My message to retailers and manufacturers is this – pay attention to the Boomers – or lose out on the profits to be made and customers to be found.