Strategies for Reaching Baby Boomers, Gen X, Millennials, and Gen Z


Have you heard the term ‘multigenerational marketing’ recently? It’s getting passed around in marketing circles more frequently as brands are finding themselves needing to market to multiple generations at once.

Currently, the majority of adults in the UK are Baby Boomers, Generation Xers, Millennials, and Generation Zers, meaning these make up most consumers.

You can imagine the challenge of trying to market to each of these generations all at once. It’s not good. Not only will each generation have different needs/wants, but they’ll also respond to marketing strategies in very different ways.

What impresses Baby Boomers may actually turn away Gen Zers. That’s why understanding generational marketing is key.


What is generational marketing? 

To put it simply, generational marketing is marketing designed for specific generations. 

A term coined when marketers realised that different marketing strategies landed differently depending on the generation, generational marketing is the technique of choosing specific strategies, languages, social channels, etc., depending on the generation you’re targeting. 

In this blog, we’re going to explain how each generation can be best reached, along with strategies we’d recommend using. 


Break down of each generation

Silent Generation (born before 1945)

This is the oldest generation businesses are likely to market to, and it won’t be common across all industries. At this stage in their lives, Silent Generationers will be looking for products that make life easier. 

By now, these consumers are likely to already be loyal customers to their favourite brands, meaning acquiring them as leads is more difficult. They often value mutual respect from the brands they do business with, so want to feel this throughout marketing. 

This generation is best reached by:

  • Radio
  • TV
  • Printed materials (brochures, leaflets) 
  • Newspapers 
  • Direct mail   

Octima’s marketing tips for the Silent Generation: 

  • This generation values family, respect and community – bring this out in your marketing through simple and straightforward means
  • You are unlikely to reach this generation via social media of any form
  • Keep language clear and straightforward – avoid modernisms or slang


Baby Boomers (born 1946 – 1964)

Although they may not have grown up with technology, Baby Boomers have certainly embraced it in recent years, especially through the use of social media, online shopping, and mobile phones. 

Baby Boomers are known to love a discount or good deal, and similarly to Silent Generationers, Baby Boomers also value brand loyalty.

This generation is best reached by: 

  • Traditional advertising: print, TV, radio
  • Loyalty schemes that encourage in-store purchasing 
  • Simple online shopping channels 
  • Social media 

Octima’s marketing tips for the Baby Boomers:

  • Stick to simple and easy to understand language 
  • Facebook is a popular social platform for Baby Boomers  
  • A mix of traditional and modern marketing techniques are key for reaching Baby Boomers 
  • Introduce loyalty schemes 


Generation X (born 1965 – 1976) 

Generation X grew up in a recession and some studies suggest that this is why they’re cautious with their money and careful with the brands they purchase from. They are also lovers of email and keen searchers of discounts, bargains, vouchers and freebies.

Having had technology for a solid portion of their lives, Generation Xers are comfortable with social media, online shopping and online advertising. It’s suggested that they are much more likely to believe reviews than they are promotional material. 

This generation is best reached by: 

  • Traditional advertising: print, TV, radio
  • Loyalty schemes 
  • Social media 
  • Email 
  • Word of mouth 

Octima’s marketing tips for Generation X:

  • Launch email marketing campaigns
  • Advertise offers and deals
  • Create discounts e.g. 10% off when you sign up to our newsletter
  • Utilise social media 
  • Keep your messaging honest, clear, and to the point. Avoid exaggeration. 
  • Create clear and quick CTAs 
  • Introduce loyalty schemes 


Millennials (born 1977 – 1995) 

This generation is the largest in history, meaning marketers are needing to cast a wide net when marketing to millennials. 

Millennials are eager to buy from brands with authentic messaging and those who prioritise environmental causes, sustainability and social causes. Similarly to Generation X, Millennials trust word of mouth and reviews more than company advertising, but instead of deals, Millennials look for items that are originally low priced. 

Having grown up with technology, Millennials are tech-savvy and can be found on most social media platforms – especially Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. 

This generation is best reached by: 

  • Influencers 
  • Social media marketing
  • Content marketing 
  • Multi-channel marketing 
  • Use-generated content 

Octima’s marketing tips for Millennials: 

  • Talk about the causes you support – sustainability, social justice, etc. 
  • Lean into social media marketing – both organic posting and paid advertising
  • Share reviews 
  • Be honest about yourself and your values, millennials will see through anything else 
  • Boost your digital marketing
  • Price your items at their true value (the lower the better)


Generation Z (born 1996 – now) 

Although the youngest generation, Gen Zers are responsible for a lot of spending. 

As the most technologically advanced generation, and the most diverse generation, marketing to Gen Zers is dramatically different to many other generations. 

Gen Z seeks out recommendations and reviews on social media and engages heavily with brands who use good social media strategies. Although they’re money-conscious, they’re the least likely generation to sign up to a loyalty scheme. 

This generation is best reached by: 

  • Social media: especially TikTok, Snapchat, Instagram, YouTube. 
  • Influencers 
  • Mobile apps 

 Octima’s marketing tips for Generation Z:

  • Focus heavily on social media marketing, creating an engaging and consistent presence 
  • Utilise short videos (especially on TikTok and Instagram)
  • Share reviews and testimonials
  • Work with influencers with similar audiences and interests 
  • Talk about the causes you support – sustainability, social justice, etc. 
  • Create an app that’s accessible on smartphones 


Find your audience with generational marketing 

As you can see from this blog, there is no one-size-fits-all marketing strategy. The differences in interests, experience, and values amongst generations means that different approaches must be taken if you are wanting to reach multi generations. 

Once you know the generations of your target audience, you can use the information in this blog to seriously enhance your marketing. 

If you’d like a helping hand with crafting marketing campaigns that go the distance, contact us.