Marketers hoping to engage baby boomers online should tap the power of search, social and user reviews, while also rethinking outmoded stereotypes, a study by Hootsuite, the social-media management platform, has argued.

Why it matters

The COVID-19 pandemic prompted older generations to adopt many digital tools and services, from online shopping and socialising to banking and virtual doctor’s appointments. These new habits present marketers with numerous opportunities, but only if they look beyond outdated assumptions regarding these shoppers. 


The four main recommendations from Hootsuite’s report are:

  • Look beyond demographics: Instead of targeting by age alone, target by passions and hobbies. This will likely attract a cross-generational audience, including baby boomers, which can lead to new revenue opportunities. 
  • Tap search and social: Search is especially popular with baby boomers, and social media is increasingly used by this audience to discover brands, too.
  • Bolster trust with online reviews: User reviews left on digital sites are especially influential on older shoppers and should be another point of focus.
  • Shatter stereotypes: Most baby boomers do not want to see advertising and marketing campaigns that depict them as “old”, and yet that’s the majority of what they’re seeing. 

Key quote
“Baby boomers don’t require a new set of tactics or an entirely separate strategy. Their increasing digital literacy simply gives marketers an opportunity (and an imperative) to challenge conventional thinking and better engage a historically underserved and underrepresented audience online” – Sarah Dawley, manager/content, Hootsuite.

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Sourced from WARC