Every generation has shared experiences, but it is important to remember you still need to get an individual to respond to your marketing. In this article, I share my tips for marketing to a specific generation or age niche.
Over the past thirty years, I’ve been fortunate to develop marketing strategies for a wide range of age groups in our economy. And I now run a business that aims to help mature age individuals achieve prosperity through business ownership. Not surprisingly, I have a deep interest in what makes different generations tick.
But beware, there are some pitfalls, which I’ll also uncover for you.
FIRST – AN AGE NICHE SHOULD BE TREATED LIKE ANY OTHER NICHE
Marketing to a generation niche should be treated like any other in that you need to do your research on needs and wants in relation to your product or service. Don’t just assume because you have a product that can be used by a specific age group that the age group will need or want it. Any business wanting to target a niche has to become an expert in that niche in order to be the best in that segment. Success will come from understanding. A good analogy is being a specialist in medicine versus a general practitioner. The specialist knows far more about their area of expertise than a GP because they have to.
SECOND – DON’T TREAT THE AGE GROUP IN A HOMOGENOUS WAY
In other words, the person’s age is only one factor that needs to be considered in a marketing program. All people over 65 don’t act that same way, nor like the same brands, and you shouldn’t treat them in an arbitrary way based on assumptions.
The retirement industry is a bad example of this marketing where almost all focus on the ‘sitting on a beach drinking pina coladas’ view of retirement. And yet recent research shows at least six sub-tribes in the retirement age group. Some continue to work, some volunteer, some buy a caravan and travel Australia, some travel overseas, some become carers to grandkids.
THIRD – UNDERSTAND THE WAY AN AGE GROUP COMMUNICATES AND MAKES DECISIONS
This will be part of your research, but also your execution. Find out how your customers make decisions in relation to products like yours. Find out what media they consume. Discover who their influencers are. And find out what service expectations they have.
An example is one thing that will frustrate mature generations more than anything is the inability to get personal service. Whereas a younger generation might be more than happy to research the answers to their questions on your FAQ page, or facebook.
FOURTH – ACTIONS SPEAKER LOUDER THAN WORDS
If you’re going to target a niche by age, then make sure your business actually lives and breathes that age group. Don’t fake being young and funky in your brand and then be all stuffy and corporate behind the front door. Most generations have a pretty good bulls&%t detector, and can tell if a company is faking it.
FIFTH – GO DEEP
If you’re marketing to a generation niche, then your business and marketing strategy should be about depth. You are now a specialist. So put all your product development and research into building out a deep and genuine offer for that audience. My recommendation is it would be better to have five products and services targeting the one niche. As opposed to one product or service for each of five niches. This relates to the above specialist versus generalist positioning.
If you are going to niche, then go deep and win. In our business, we have a thirty-year strategic plan for our mature age segment. And it will eventually lead to a business that is wholly invested in all the products and services that individuals within our niche need and want. We’re doubling down on being an expert in our target audience.
If you want to niche your business on age, treat it like any other niche. Understand it better than anyone else. Commit to it harder than anyone else. And you will be successful.
Originally published on Smallville.