Eco targetBack in April, I attended Tammy Erickson’s KBIS presentation, “The Influence of the Generations on the Kitchen & Bath Market.”  In part one of this post, we discussed how she broke down five generational groups and the influencers of each time period.

Since we know a bit about how the generations forged their core values let’s now take a look at how we can market to those same values.

The Traditionalists

This generation trusts authority at its core. To market to them, you must position yourself as trustworthy and as an authority on the products and services you sell.

They have lived a life of delayed gratification, always sacrificing so that others could benefit. Their core belief is that “someday it will be my turn.” We see that now as Traditionalists invest in their properties to age in place. They want to age comfortably at home and be self-sufficient.

Our marketing should look to tell them “now is your time.” Another way to say that would be “you’ve earned it,” or “reward yourself.”

The Baby Boomers

This is definitely the target with the most money to spend. Money is recognition to boomers and, by extension, having nice things that express their ability to spend gives them the recognition they seek.

Boomers also tend to have multi-generational households and are happy when the kids come home. From studies, 49% of boomers are interested in modern or new-age appeal.

Helping this generation self-actualize and having them associate with the best are two key strategies for landing their business. Remember, unlike their parents, they tend to not trust authority so you need to work hard to earn that trust by demonstrating how they can move upward.

Gen X

This debt burdened generation invested heavily in education and typically bought their homes at peak value. They may be underwater, but are very family orientated (consider that many moved back into their boomer parents homes after the financial crisis).

A strong appeal of options and choices can help you connect best while providing a fun, light experience. 55% of this generation invests in remodeling, but a portion of that may be in DIY. Teach them how to do it and you may be rewarded with more sales.

Gen Y

A home is a creative outlet for this group. They are seeking convenience and comfort, and over 90% are looking for open space. A minimalist, hand-crafted style is definitely appealing as long as there is connectivity to technology.

Since this is the first digitally native generation, offer your expertise and teach them what they need to know. Connect by offering your expertise through your website and giving them a non-threatening way to learn.

The Re-Generation

As this generation enters the marketplace it’s safe to assume that they may defer gratification. They will be a generation of trade-offs and compromise, and will look to practical, finite limits.

Like the generation before them, they need to learn at their own pace through resources you provide.

One Great Example

One of the best illustrations of marketing to the generations can be demonstrated by campaigns from the US Army.  Check out how they morphed simple phrases to appeal to their audience over the past 100 years:

The Traditionalists – I Want You

The Boomers – Be All You Can Be

Generation X – An Army of One

Generation Y -You Made Them Strong, We’ll Make Them Army Strong

In a sentence, they proved that they knew their market. Are you aiming your marketing in the right place?