Generation X (born between 1965 and 1980 – now 36-51 years old) represents an estimated population of 66 million people or 25% of the U.S. population. Generation X is smaller in population than our two previous featured generations (millennials and baby boomers). They currently make more money than the average Millennial but have far more long-term financial commitments. 54% plan to work past age 65 or do not plan to retire as they have become accustomed to a certain level of lifestyle. Your business can successfully market to Generation X using a mix of older traditional marketing tactics as well as new age strategies that have proven successful with the younger generations.
Television. With on-demand television programming and streaming services, live television viewership has started to decline. 61% of Gen Xers would choose traditional cable over streaming services if they had to choose just one. While this is almost a direct inverse of the millennials. Using television ad campaigns, particularly during highly anticipated live events, is a great way to drive your message to this generation.
You’ve Got Mail. Whether you’re executing an e-mail marketing campaign or an old fashioned direct mail campaign, Gen Xers respond to each. Generation X still holds an appreciation for standard mail, using it in personal and professional settings. They also are very in-tune with their personal email accounts. Having a good mix of each will benefit your business when targeting this generation.
Back In the Old Days. I always tell my clients, nothing sells better than emotion. A great way to pull on the Generation X’s heart strings is to take them back to the good old days. We’ve seen a ton of successful product and brand relaunches in the past few years (retro video games, clothing styles, TV & Movie remakes, children’s toys). Get creative in your company’s messaging and try to connect with Generation X with a certain level of nostalgia.
Facebook. Like the baby boomers, Generation X’s loves them some Facebook. 81% of Gen-X have a Facebook account while over half of them are active users. Unlike millennials, Generation X is pretty responsive to advertisements and view it as a trusted source for information and promotion. Running an ad campaign on Facebook is definitely recommended when targeting 36-51-year-olds.
Mix It Up. Generation X is stuck between the baby boomers, responsive to traditional marketing tactics, and millennials, extremely unresponsive to traditional marketing tactics. Their buying behaviors show that they have absorbed a little of both generations. For example, 62% of Generation X still reads the newspaper and 48% listen to traditional radio programming. Yet they are very active online and as young adults grew up with the internet. Having a strong marketing mix is extremely important when you are putting together your company’s marketing strategy.
This is the third in a five-part series that will highlight each generation and how your business can actively market to each to increase sales.
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