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Study: For Boomers Optimism and Social Conscience of brands is key

Marko Greitschus / pixelio.de

Are Boomers trying to be younger than they are? Are they just identifying themselves from a brand perspective with a more youthful mindset? Are they buying the latest product trends of brands? A recent study conducted by WPP’s The Geppetto Group states that adults -especially Baby Boomers- are seeking brands that mirror an optimistic feeling back to them. So in some way the study suggests that Boomers have a more sustainable perspective when buying brands.

The survey polled 200 men and women (35 – 64) to find out what drives this audience towards certain brands and how this might affect the purchasing decision process. The message is: We don’t forget those brands we had when we were young. Our personalities are closely connected with these brands – especially if these brands were associated with positive messages.

“Marketers need to ask themselves if they’re missing the boat when it comes to Boomers. Are they offering them optimism and social conscience, and are they identifying with inherent qualities of their youths? Think of the impact that kind of thinking could have for sports retailers or restaurant chains for instance.” Julie Halpin, Founder and CEO, The Geppetto Group

The study sums up three major findings that are important to know for marketers…

1. 66% of adults are looking for brands that express their personality

For the GenXers and Boomers technology brands express what their personality stands for. Especially if the brands are going hand-in-hand with expressing youthful qualities. Brands like Apple, Dell, Sony and HP were good reflections of their inner selves. And also Levi Jeans are still popular for them, not so much fashion brands like Diesel or Seven for all Mankind.

2. 57% of adults are challenging brands to surprise and delight them

The study finds that Boomers get exhited about brands that for younger generation might come along as boring. For Boomers brands like Swiffer, Keurig and Under Gear can be surprising again, the study reads. On this point I would have loved to get a clearer picture of how the argumentation

3. Optimism and (corporate) social ethics are important for Boomers

Are these values becoming more and more important, the more people experience in life? Is this because you think more about life, the older you get? The study states that brands that incorporate optimism and social responsibility in their messaging score 12-13 points higher for Boomers than for the Gen Xers.

Spot On!
Buying brands people always want to make a statement about their personality. Some to bolster their identity, some to define their personality – some to show off. Brands play a massive role in the process of self-definition in our global value system. If Boomers purchase products we used to think that trust and reliability plays a big role in the purchase process. The study now illustrates that the messages the “In” brands spread out, don’t necessarily reach the Boomers that are more aligned with the brands of the past, and might be embracing optimistic messaging than just running after the “latest and greatest” of the younger generation. For me it also makes clear that the value system of brands needs to be reviewed.

Nielsen study: iPad users open for ads

When the the iPad certainly was introduced by Apple’s CEO Steve Jobs it was said to be “a truly magical and revolutionary product.” This week I have bought an iPad myself and have tried to understand what the tablet is capable as a mobile business device. I cannot really say it failed. And a new study by Nielsen asking 5.000 mobile users shows us how the iPad is delivering businesses from the perspective of a new ad platform.

The Nielsen findings from their new “Connected Devices Playbook” suggest that the iPad owners are more open and responsive to advertising than mobile users of other devices – even those of the iPhone. The study shows that iPad users are more likely to buy products after being introduced to ads. And 60% of the respondents of users across the iPad, iPhone and all other connected devices responded they were “OK with advertising if it means I can access content for free.”

The magic formula for making ads for iPad users effective are interactive features: 45% of iPad owners said they were more likely to click on ads that included multimedia than 26% of iPhone subscribers and 27% of other connected device owners. Isn’t this perfect news for the launch of Apple’s iAd platform?

What makes marketers even more happy is that iPad users indicate that they buy a product via their mobile device because of an ad. 24% of iPad users made an in-store purchase compared to 10% of those who use other devices. It seems that the iPad and other mobile devices might offer a helping hand as a revenue driver to all retailers or shop-owners. Nevertheless, we might ask the question whether this is as of the new product and the hype around it, or if this will last in the future. The final question could be how Apple will change their single app sales strategy to make the use of the iPad more cost-friendly for users.

So, who is the typical iPad user? The Nielsen study says they tend to be younger and more male than users of other devices like users of the Acer Aspire One, the Kindle, the iPhone, iPod touch or the Sony PlayStation Portable. 65% of iPad users were male and under the age of 35.

Spot On!
Sometimes it is funny when you read these studies and remember your own shopping experience. Some weeks ago, when the iPad was not even available I remember a 45 year old posh women rushing into the Apple shop. She did not even realize that the sales guy next to me was explaining the benefits of an iPad to me. She just asked when the iPad will be available, got her answer and rushed out with the same urgency she came in. The sales guy was shaking his head that day, saying some of our clients are weird. When you think about how eager she was to buy the product, I can understand that advertising is still effective… not only on an iPad.