In an effort to get the most bang for their advertising dollars, marketers today tend to group audiences into 2 main generational groups – millennials (born 1981-1996) and baby boomers (born 1946-1954). Millennials are seen as eager-to-spend, tech-savvy customers while baby boomers are seen as slow, unmotivated, and uninteresting buyers. As a result, more creative storytelling video marketing efforts go into ads for millennials while seniors are barraged with ads using old scare tactics or dumbed-down messages like “Buy this medication, or you could die” “Technology is hard, isn’t it? Luckily we made you something a child can use.”
Haley Bertelsen of the University of Oregon conducted a study to explore if video marketing to seniors can be associated with sales, followers, customer population, or brand recognition. The study examined how seniors interacted with Facebook pages via likes, shares, and posts with pages with and without videos embedded.
Bertelsen’s study found that seniors were just as responsive to video marketing as younger generations, and they interacted in a similar fashion. Video marketing to baby boomers on social media outlets like Facebook proved to be successful in likes, shares, and posts. While some felt that the quickly changing technology was difficult, they all felt they could easily keep up with a little help. The biggest problem, seniors said, was being left out.
It is understandable that video marketers focus their efforts on reaching specific groups and communities they believe have the most buying power and the largest likelihood of becoming repeat customers. As the study suggests, when it comes to millennials and baby boomers, the latter are actually the better buyers since they have more disposable income than baby boomers due to more financial freedom whereas millennials usually have low-paying jobs, school loans, and dependents. Nevertheless, to marketers, Bertelsen writes, “Millennials are the hip, hot, interested customer, and baby boomers are the old, grouchy, simplistic buyers.” By focusing video marketing efforts on millennials and largely ignoring baby boomers, advertisers may be ignoring a 13 trillion dollar market.
To read the full text of the study: https://scholarsbank.uoregon.edu/xmlui/handle/1794/24995
Bertelsen, Haley Alexis (2019). The Effect of Video Marketing On Seniors. Scholars’ Bank