Right now, three unique generations are buying or seeing your advertising message every day:
- Born between 1945 and 1964, this generation is 76 million strong.
- They control nearly 80 percent of financial assets and about 50 percent of all discretionary spending power.
- Their focus has switched from acquisition to preservation.
- There are still sales to be made, though not nearly as many.
- Born between 1961 to 1981, this generation is much smaller than the Baby Boomer generation (46 million vs. 76 million).
- X’ers have not fared as well financially as baby boomers:
- Expect some up and down years and manage your business accordingly.
- These generations, along with remaining Baby Boomers, are spending.
- Focus on making it through the next five years or so, when the much larger Generation Y begins to form households.
Generation Y…the “Millennial”
- Born between about 1982 and 1998, this generation is 75 million strong:
- Those numbers compare to the Boomers
- Gen Y shows an inclination to marry and have children later to make sure they get it “right”.
- This is the first generation to be raised with technology at an early age:
- To them, if it’s not on the Internet it doesn’t exist. If they can’t reach you through Facebook, Twitter or text, you won’t reach them at all.
- It’s vital to understand what this means to marketing and communicating with this group:
- This will allow you to take advantage of the same kind of growth observed when the Boomers came of age.
Don’t fight change. Instead, EMBRACE it. You will be better positioned to succeed if you don’t have to scramble to catch up.
When you create your five year plan (you have one, don’t you?), if it looks like your previous plan, ask yourself if your business will be better or worse off if you just maintain the status quo. Be honest with your answer.
Do what’s necessary to implement a technology-based approach to your specific situation. It may mean investing in people or creating new strategic partnerships. Invest with confidence that doing it right will give you a competitive advantage when opportunity knocks.
Prepare to pass the baton now. Every winner does it flawlessly.