Do you know who your best clients are? What generation do they belong to?
This is an important question because different generations have different ideas about success, money, communication, social media, and more. If you are targeting Baby Boomers, you will need to market much differently than targeting a Millennial.
When you understand the distinctions between generations, it will help you with marketing to various age groups in real estate.
Why do Generations Matter?
A generation is a group of people born around the same time as each other. This set of individuals often shares important mindsets, preferences, and values.
Of course, people differ, and nothing is set in stone. However, you can often expect a Millennial to be more focused on digital media and a Boomer to have traditional ideas about money and success.
When you understand the general preferences and mindsets of each age group, it will help you focus your real estate marketing. You can communicate in a way that makes sense to that generation, express the character qualities they value, and help them understand the dream of home ownership in their own way.
Baby Boomers: Ages 51 – 69
One thing that makes boomers unique is that they are staying active into much older ages than previous generations. This group is not ready to rock their lives away on their front porch. As a result, you can expect them to be continuing to buy and sell homes in their older years.
Boomers are working longer than ever, meaning that their money situation is stronger and more stable at this age than their parents’. They have more discretionary income than any other group in the U.S.
The Boomers represent a strong market segment for Realtors®. If you focus on this age range, incorporate the following elements into your marketing:
- Email marketing. Boomers use email more than younger groups.
- Online informational articles. Boomers love to do research, and millions of them are on the internet every day.
- Personalization. Focus on 1-on-1 interaction and personalized content.
- Engagement. Invite Boomers to get involved and give their opinion on the information you provide.
Generation X: Ages 34 – 50
It’s easy to forget about Generation X due to the enormous size of both the Boomer generation and the Millennials. However, this group is among the most productive members of the workforce.
Many of this generation are supporting older parents and raising younger children at the same time. They are very family focused. This group is also status driven and loves to travel.
Generation X tends to spend more time and money on others than themselves, so take that into account when selling them real estate. Focus on the benefits a home provides to the family and consider that they will want to be close to parents and have good opportunities for their kids.
Some other ways to market to Generation X include:
- Social Media. Generation X actually spends more time on social media than Millennials.
- Provide Options. This group is skeptical of big claims and likes to shop around.
- Simply Decisions. With so much responsibility, Generation X is used to making major decisions. However, they benefit from professionals like Realtors® who can lay out alternatives and simplify decision-making.
- Convenience. Xers don’t have time to waste. Be sure to offer them accessibility and make the buying or selling process as smooth as possible.
Millennials, Ages 22 – 33
The world that Millennials grew up in couldn’t be more different than the world Xers and Boomers knew. A time of incredibly rapid technological growth coincided with difficult economic times.
Because all they’ve ever known is the hyperconnected world of the internet and social media, they have very different priorities and expectations than Xers or Boomers. They can be a bit retro-focused and nostalgic.
Millennials are the largest generation, outnumbering Boomers. However, they can be hard to sell on the concept of homeownership. They were keenly aware of the 2008 crash, and tend to prefer access and mobility over ownership and roots.
Here are some ways you can market real estate to Millennials:
- Home Base. Sell the concept of home ownership as providing them a home base for their adventures. They can do anything they care to and always have somewhere to call home.
- Nostalgia. You can also remind Millennials of the “good old days” when home ownership provided comfort, security, and a great place to bake an apple pie. Point out that a home lets them escape the hustle and create authentic experiences for themselves and their families.
- Social Media Creativity. Because Millennials have seen many of the marketing tricks available online, it takes creativity and fun for them to take notice.
- Testimonials. This generation relies on word-of-mouth more than Xers or Boomers, so having online reviews and testimonials is vital.
It won’t be long before we’ll be talking about Generation Z, the young folks behind Millennials. Right now, however, they aren’t in home-buying mode.
As a Realtor®, do you focus primarily on Boomers, Xers, or Millennials? Do your marketing practices line up with their preferences? If not, some simple adjustments could bring you a lot of success.