Boomers key to economic recovery

Friday, May 29, 2009

Baby Boomers should be renamed Economic Boomers.

As a statistical demographic, they control more than half of the discretionary spending, they hold more than 70 percent of the country's wealth, and there's a behavioral trend that indicates that they are still spending that money, even during the recession.

That's why, according to experts, they hold the key to America's economic recovery and why the best thing American business could do right now is market to boomers.

According to one expert, when the American economy recovers, it will be on the backs of Baby Boomers. Consumer spending is the backbone of our economy, and Boomers are still spending -- they are simply being more selective than before the recession. When selling to them, you can't 'quick close' them, you can't corner them into buying something they don't want, and you can't trick them into buying something they can't afford.

So, the best thing any business in America could do right now is to learn how to sell to Boomers. It's not just good for business -- it's good for the economy.

Boomers carry with them not only the hopes of companies that offer consumer products and services, but also the economy itself.

They are smart, insecure, caring, direct, confident and suspicious. They've seen every sales trick in the book and hate most of them. They are the vanguard of the consumer culture, so marketers and sales people have been trying to sell to them since they saw their first cereal commercial on a 12 inch black and white TV (before cable).

Sales tricks and pressure tactics do nothing but insult them.

They not only know the value of a dollar, but they also know the value of a penny. They sometimes don't make sense -- they'll remodel their kitchen with a giant six-burner stainless steel range, and then use it for heating water for tea. They'll bargain and haggle at the drop of a hat, squeezing concessions from salespeople. They're favorite question is "is that

the best you can do?"

If they are so difficult, why bother with them?

The short answer is that because that's where the money is. They may be savvy and egotistical, but they are also loyal and offer referrals to people who go out of their way to take care of them. They are a lot of work for salespeople, but if you can earn their trust and confidence, they will be the best customers you ever had.