Field Guide to Working with Baby Boomers Brings Insights to Serving One of America’s Most Lucrative Demographics
With more than 75 million people fitting into the American Baby Boomer demographic, it is easy to understand why this group would be important for REALTORS® to understand. Even more eye-popping to REALTORS® is the fact that more than 70 percent of Baby Boomers own homes and will be looking to homeownership changes really soon.
This spells big opportunities for REALTORS® looking to serve the burgeoning Baby Boomer market over the next 10-15 years. It is also one of the reasons why the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® updated its “Field Guide to Working with Baby Boomers” resource earlier this year.
Baby Boomers have money to spend—as opposed to those who grew up in the Great Depression, Baby Boomers are quite affluent. According to a Nielsen report, they account for $230 billion in sales of consumer packaged goods like coffee, diet soda and magazines, and make up 70% of the nation’s disposable income. Baby Boomers will also inherit $13 trillion in the next 20 years.
Baby Boomers invented the suburbs—suburban home development occurred simultaneously with Baby Boomers’ ability to make down payments on a mortgage and their desire to leave urban marketplaces. They still live in the suburbs, where many now own 100% of their own homes.
They plan on living in a better house as they grow older—70 % of Baby Boomers think their current house is not the best they can get and they are looking to upgrade. Baby Boomers are setting new trends that defy traditional definitions of a “relaxed” retirement. Instead, they are diligently looking for newly constructed homes where they can continue to pursue an active lifestyle surrounded by the latest amenities.
Their brand loyalty is tenacious—once they find a brand they like, one they grew up with, they stick with it. Volkswagen cars. Levi jeans. Harley Davidson motorcycles. Club Med. Noxzema. L’eggs. This means that finding out what your Baby Boomer client’s interests are will help guide you toward homes that best meet these trends and, ultimately, increase the chances of closing a deal.
Remembering Woodstock—the famous music festival was a countercultural event which symbolized that the Baby Boomers were not going to be defined by their parent’s morals and lifestyle. They were going to think and act for they themselves – and they still want to be thought of that way. The least hint of patronizing the Baby Boomers will flatten any marketing campaign.
Baby boomers do use social media, but in a different way—as you develop your social media strategy for Baby Boomers, be aware that while a 20-year old is posting photos of their night out on Instagram or Snapchat, a Baby Boomer is more likely to post a photograph of a new grandbaby or the new RV they just purchased on Facebook. It’s the more ‘traditional’ venues such as Facebook and Twitter that are used by Baby Boomers; so keep your focus there.
Baby boomers are not ‘old’—Baby Boomers do not want to be reminded of their age or be considered as old; rather, they want to be encouraged about their accomplishments and their future. They want to hear about the opportunities that reside before them to experience new chapters in their life.
In addition to marketing resources for the Baby Boomer market, this field guide also provides tips on reverse mortgage basics, housing trends for the over-50 demographic, related websites relevant to this audience and links to eBooks & other resources.
Click here to view the entire “Field Guide to Working with Baby Boomers” resource.