Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Generation X and Y Marketing- 4 tips for marketing to Generation X and Y

Technology has changed. The economy has changed, and so must your marketing tactics if you want to stay competitive and cash in on the 120 million generation X and Y consumers who spend over 300 billion dollars a year on products and services.

The article written below truly captures the fundenmentals of marketing to generation X and Y based on direct response marketing.

Generation X consists of those born between 1965 and 1978. Their estimated population is 40 million and they make up close to 17% of the US population. This group is currently in their 30’s and 40’s meaning they are in the height of the consumer phase of life. They are starting families, buying homes and purchasing products. As a whole, this group can spot outdated marketing tactics a mile away due to their skeptical nature and theirover-exposure to traditional marketing methods.

Generation Y are those born between 1979 and 1994 (estimated population 80 million) and they make up about 25% of the US total population. This group is generally idealistic, patriotic and tech savvy. Gen Yers are currently in the phase of graduating from college, and starting their careers. As a whole, this group is tech savvy and total immune to most traditional marketing messages targeted to them.

Although Gen Xers and Gen Yers are different, they have a number of things in common. Both groups grew up with recessions, single - parent households, the Internet and, cable TV other personal technology. Communicating with them through traditional marketingchannels can be difficult because they consume media messages differently than earlier generations.
So, how can you reach these consumers and get them to take action on your message? Studies have found that a combination of online marketing tactics & direct mail pieces are the best and most powerful ways to market to both generation x and y.

Listed below are 4 quick tips for marketing to Generation x and Y

1. Knowing your audience is essential for the success of any online, social media or direct marketing campaign. Direct mail is most effective when you understand your audience, time your campaign appropriately, provide a compelling offer, and develop a relevant message to that audience. Having information about Gen Xers or Yers in general terms is a place to start butyou need to dig deeper and develop a fuller understanding of the segment you wan to market to. Once you've gotten to know your audience, other marketing criteria will be easier to uncover.

2. Timing. You should know what motivates them, what there greatest pains are and what products or services they are currently using, in addition to how these products or services are easing the pain in their lives. Communicating your message at the right time can make all the difference in your marketing results.

Therefore, you need to have an understanding of your audience's timeline and when they are in the market to buy your product or service. For example: selling Halloween pumpkins immediately after October 31st won't produce the results you're looking for. Be aware of their timelines and be sure to reach them early enough so they can respond to your offer.

3. The Offer. Your offer should provide benefits to the buyer as well as provide some level of comfort in moving forward with a purchase. Many consumers need a reason to buy, especially Gen Xers who are normally skeptical and Gen Y who need social proof before buying. .
Keeping this in mind, when making an offer to a Gen Xers be sure your product or service offers has some kind of satisfaction guarantee or money-back refund policy. This will make the Gen Xers feel like they have more control over the transaction.
When making an offer to Gen Yers be sure you have plenty of testimonies & peer reviews from other Gen Y’s. This allows Gen Yers to feel more secure about the transaction. By adding these small additions to your product or service so you will quickly begin to differentiate what you’re offering from everyone else.

4. The Message. – When it comes to your message context is everything. Your message needs to resonate with prospective buyers. Your Message should communicate the benefits as well as features. Your message overall should be written and expressed in the language of that generation and provide a simple, yet compelling reason to buy.
When it comes to marketing to Generation X & Y testing your messages on an ongoing basis is important due to the life transitions these generations are experiencing.

Finally, know matter whether you’re marketing to either Generation X, Y, or both, use direct mail in your marketing mix. Keep in mind however, that a direct marketing piece should be supplemented with other forms of marketing such as internet marketing, social media, social networks and search engine optimization.

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