February 6, 2018

Marketing can feel like a game.

Everyone says one method will work, but it never seems to work for you.

That’s because we’re all marketing to different audiences.

Different genders, ages, locations, interests… of course the same marketing method doesn’t work for everyone.

For example, in central Illinois, a lot of the agents make comparisons to farming. For example, “One month in a nursing home would cost you one acre of land.”

You wouldn’t use that same marketing method on someone who lives in New York City, would you?

But we did find that baby boomers – in general – share some common perceptions. They respond to emotion, they need to trust you, and they like to take their time when it comes to making big decisions.

Understanding who you’re selling to will make your job so much easier. Here are 9 things you should consider when marketing to baby boomers.


1. Build your case on emotion, then close with reasoning.

We wrote an article a few weeks ago about selling to logical thinkers. It turns out that same selling process goes for baby boomers.

This generation is highly influenced by emotions, so rather than focusing on a product’s features, try starting with how that product will make them feel.

Try answering these questions:

  1. How will I feel after I have this policy?
  2. How will my average day change once I have this policy?
  3. What impact does this policy have on my life?

Then, you can focus on logical reasons to buy, such as product details, features, and the price.

2. Specifically call out your audience when you’re marketing or creating advertisements.

The right side of our brain goes through a process called information triage, which helps us sort out useless information and important information.

That short explanation is hugely summarized, but here’s what it means: if a baby boomer sees an ad, and they don’t immediately sense that it’s for them, they’ll tune out.

To remedy this, your marketing and advertisements should immediately call out your audience.

If you’re selling Medicare Supplements, here are a few examples:

  • Are you turning 65 soon?
  • Did you just sign up for Medicare?
  • Are you getting ready to sign up for Medicare?
  • Turning 65ers
  • Attention Medicare enrollees!

Once our brain processes that yes, this applies to ME, our brain lets that information pass through.

If you’ve ever looked across a crowd of people and did a double take, your brain recognized a piece of relevance. Perhaps it was someone you knew or something strange going on, but when we hear something that applies to us, our brain essentially does a double take.

And that’s what you want!

3. Build authenticity and trust with your prospects and clients.

The baby boomer generation is overwhelmingly receptive to authenticity, trust, and honesty.

It will become harder and harder to make a sale to a baby boomer if you haven’t taken the time to establish trust.

We’ve gone over many ways to establish trust with your prospects in the past, but here are a few examples:

You can also establish authenticity by not being pushy, following up with the client, and calling on special holidays and birthdays.

4. Build the value before you disclose the price.

Baby boomers have been found to be less sensitive to price and extremely sensitive to value.

In other words, if you can build the value of your product, they’ll be more receptive to a higher price.

However, this is a bigger challenge than it might sound. Younger buyers are quick to assign value, while the baby boomer generation has a more sophisticated way of measuring value.

For baby boomers, products and services that have value actually add value to their being. In other words, their purchase has to significantly impact their life. Research has shown that boomers look for spiritual impact, mental impact, and tangible impact.

It’s important that you really build up the value of your product so that the price more than justifies the actual product.

5. Images with motion have more impact than posed pictures.

You’ve probably seen all the cheesy photos of seniors posing for stock images. It turns out that they don’t grab the attention of baby boomers.

Images that show motion convey vitality, which is extremely appealing to the older generation.

If you can, avoid posed images and start using photos with movement.

6. Focus on facial expressions, and make sure they’re authentic.

The more years you have behind you, the wiser you are.

And research has shown that seniors have a keen eye when it comes to facial expressions.

They’re easily able to detect authenticity and genuinity, and much moreso than the younger generation.

If you’re developing video content or are using images in your marketing, be sure that the facial expressions match your message.

7. Don’t focus on the social benefits of buying a product.

The older we get, the less we care about what everyone else thinks.

Peer pressure is not a powerful marketing tactic when we’re talking about baby boomers.

Saying something like, “This is what nearly everyone purchases at this age,” will have less of an effect than you might think.

Instead, focus on the practicality of the product along with how the product will make them feel. The more we understand how important individuality is at this age, the easier the marketing will be.

8. Stick to the facts. And back them up.

Wide sweeping claims aren’t easily digested by baby boomers.

If you cite a statistic or make a broad claim, be sure to back it up.

For example, when we teach agents about cancer insurance, we always provide statistics from the American Cancer Society, and we encourage you to use those with your clients.

And when you make claims about Medicare Supplements, be sure to have that Medicare & You handbook in front of you so that you can back up your facts.

Years and years of buying has prepared baby boomers for deceit, lies, and hyperbole.

Be clear in your facts, and make sure you’re prepared to defend them.

9. Be patient. Very. Patient.

Baby boomers spend more time when it comes to buying decisions. And the more expensive the product, the more time they take.

Avoid urgency marketing tactics, such as “Buy today!” or “Buy before it’s too late!”

This will be lost on the baby boomer generation.

Instead, be patient with the sales process and give your prospects time to formulate a decision. This will be appreciated, and you’ll be surprised how true the saying “slow and steady wins the race” is.

💬 What else have you noticed when it comes to marketing to baby boomers? Let us know in the comment section below.

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