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Boomer Consumer: Ten New Rules for Marketing to America’s Largest, Wealthiest and Most Influential Group Hardcover – July 1, 2007

14 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

For 40 years, companies and organizations have focused their marketing efforts on young adults 18-49 years old. But today's Boomer Consumer, those 78 million Americans born between 1946-64, are either 50 years old or will be soon. And marketers are confused.

They don't know how to treat today's older Boomers, who aren't "seniors" and never will be, but are no longer young adults.

Over the past few years, Matt Thornhill and John Martin of the Boomer Project have extensively researched and studied Boomers. They have uncovered key psychological, sociological, and anthropological aspects of this generation. And they have identified ten "new rules" for marketing to today's Boomer Consumer.

Boomers are far from "over the hill" as consumers, and this book will show you how to still connect with this large and in charge generation. You'll learn the importance of emotionally compelling messages, the power of story, and how to use life stage instead of age as a way to connect with them. Companies and organizations that can tap into today's Boomer Consumer will be poised for success for years to come.

From the Back Cover

Financial services, healthcare, travel & tourism, real estate, retail, home improvement, consumer products, non-profits, and dozens of other industries are about to be transformed by today's older Boomer Consumer. The majority of Boomers are now age 50 and beyond and the rest will forever leave the ranks of "young adults" by 2014. Boomers aren't "seniors" and aren't young anymore. Because of this, they often feel ignored.

Companies and organizations need new insights and guidelines in trying to capture the attention of America's largest, wealthiest, and most influential group - one that spends some $2.3 trillion annually on goods and services. Based on proprietary national research, the Boomer Project's Matt Thornhill and John Martin lay out practical and tactical tips and techniques for reaching and connecting with older Boomers. This is a "must read" for anyone who wants to sell to or influence Boomer Consumers.

Portrait of today's Boomer Consumer:

* Boomers tell us "middle age" begins at about age 47 and "old age" around age 73. That means Boomers in their 50's and beyond still think of themselves in early "middle age." Does your organization have the same perception?

* Two out of three Boomers are married, but fully one-third never married, are separated, divorced or widowed. Those single head-of-households still spend money on groceries, electronics and cars - should you be targeting them today?

* Already more than one third of Boomers are grandparents, and half of all grandparents alive today are from the Boomer generation. It's one life stage that once Boomers achieve, they'll never relinquish. How can you tap into it?

* Only 8% of Boomers described themselves as "retired," and the majority of those who haven't say they have no idea when they will retire. What are the implications of that for your company or organization?


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: LINX Corp; First Edition edition (July 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0964238675
  • ISBN-13: 978-0964238671
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.5 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #996,475 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Brent Green on July 26, 2007
Format: Hardcover
With respect to an aging, wealthy and influential generation, the concept of "marketing to Boomers" took off about 2003 with a colossal, "So what?" This was generally how the business world first embraced the marketing idea.

"Why market to a generational niche?" "What's new about Boomers as consumers?" (Translation: We've been marketing to them for decades ... yawn.) "Isn't it time those aging hippies get out of the marketing spotlight and saunter into their marmalade sunset?"

Many executives didn't see the point in understanding unprecedented demographic and economic destiny. They were too busy cranking out marketing campaigns to target adults 18 to 34. They were also about to miss the most significant development in market segmentation in about a decade.

After a gazillion media articles on the topic, what seems obvious today was not clear four years ago -- to most.

Two men who did get it -- and subsequently formed The Boomer Project -- were John Martin and Matt Thornhill. A bit hopeful in their ambitions at first, they nevertheless began collecting data and formulating insights about the possibilities for aging Boomers as an unrivaled market force in the coming years.

These pioneers also continued educating themselves about the newest thinking in areas such as anthropology, neuropsychology and sociology. They tapped into breakthrough insights of respected thinkers such as David Wolfe, Laura Carstensen, Ph.D. and Gene Cohen, M.D.

The result of their original research and multidisciplinary synthesis of outstanding authors and academicians is a book called "Boomer Consumer." It is simply a concise, clear, and coherent compendium of on-target information and insights about a rapidly growing field of inquiry and practice.

If you're interested in jumping on this bandwagon, then you need to add this book to your reading list. Matt and John are two Pied Pipers worth following.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Nancy Fernandez Mills on August 2, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Matt Thornhill has been sending out red alerts to corporate marketers for several years now. His message: You are failing to target 78 million consumers who have plenty of money and are willing to spend a lot of it! (Billions? Trillions?) Today, thanks to Matt and his colleagues like marketing gurus Brent Green and Marti Barletta, some companies are beginning to figure out how to talk to, sell to and profit from serving the Boomers.

Matt and his business partner John Martin have written a very convincing book. If ad execs can read this book and still not revamp their campaigns to target Baby Boomers, they are more stuck in their 18-49 year old "desirable demographic" thinking that I would have thought possible!

When the Boomers TV team went to ad agencies in 2005 looking for sponsors to underwrite our 13 part television series Boomers! Redefining Life After Fifty, we were almost always sent into a conference room to talk to creatives and account execs who were in their 20's. They really couldn't relate to a show for a "demo" older than 35! Today, some agencies and the media in general are beginning to change, thanks to Boomers with power and name recognition who are talking about being over 50 as OK, even cool. The influence of people like Katie Couric and Dave Letterman are noted by Matt and John in their book.

Boomer Consumer is an interesting read, even if you don't have a lot of toothpaste or cars or trips to sell. The authors' psycho-social approach and their reminders that there are many kinds of Boomers with many different goals, dreams and lifestyles are valuable. But their conclusion that almost all Boomers will be looking for ways to stay vital in five key areas of life also rings true.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Chuck Nyren on July 16, 2007
Format: Hardcover
These gentleman are THE Baby Boomer marketing research experts.

But I knew that already, what with following The Boomer Project for the last three years, and subscribing to their newsletter.

Research. Well, being one of those snotty creative types who, as a rule, metaphorically throws research in the trash, I always seem to glean great stuff from The Boomer Project and their insights. The reason is because (and this sounds like a back-handed compliment, but it isn't) The Boomer Project is a down-to-earth, fairly small outfit - not a bloated, impersonal multinational. I rarely trust survey results with simpleminded black and white questions given to tens of thousands of people. The companies that do those merely crank-out, crunch, and collate - while Matt and John spend time listening to the people who will be involved in their surveys before they even fashion the questions. You'll know what I mean when you read the book.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Ken S. Yarbrough on July 17, 2007
Format: Hardcover
The insights about marketing to Boomers will keep you focused and keep you from making some expensive assumptions. Plus, if you are a Boomer yourself you'll find it funny and interesting.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A. Amos on July 18, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I am a Gen X (hate the label) advertising and marketing professional who found this book very enlightening and just as enjoyable. It's a thoughtful, thorough and engaging presentation of facts and insights about "that group" which has held the attention of marketing/advertising America for multiple decades.

If you are not a Boomer, you will most certainly learn something and will probably find yourself thinking, "Oh, so THAT explains it...!" If you are a Boomer, I bet you'll find that these guys really get it.

After reading this book, you'll be satisfied that you took a meaningful first step and got ahead of the curve in understanding how to market to this group for many years to come.
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