My name is Leah, and I’m a Generation Xer.
My generation is labeled as the first that won’t do as well as our parents’. Is this true? Is this why brands don’t market to us?
One main theme you’ll hear over and over again is that Gen X is financially strapped. This financial predicament exists because Xers are known to have lots of debt, children and parents to take care of, and no savings; they were hit by the recession; and many lost homes during the housing crash.
In terms of marketing, brands aren’t thinking of us either. Us poor Xers are sandwiched between Boomers and the Millennials and it can feel a little like “Marsha. Marsha. Marsha.” (If you’re born after 1984, Google it.)
However, there is great potential here for brands and marketing to Gen X:
- According to a 2015 Ipsos Affluent Survey USA, Gen X is now the largest generation of affluents.
- Gen X comprises 25% of the U.S. population and has 30 percent of the spending share. Arthur Zaczkiewicz writes about how retailers need a multigenerational marketing approach to messaging.
- Gen X have the most influence on the Millennials, so we are influential decision-makers.
- We’ll also be the heads of companies and your politicians very soon. So learning more about how we operate, what motivates us, and how to get us to take action will be very important to brands.
When ready to craft marketing messages, it’s important to consider that Gen X encapsulates four types of segments:
- Pragmatic: Interested in information economy and the Internet.
- Disenfranchised: Dissatisfied with the world and feel they often are overlooked between Baby Boomer aging and Gen Y growing up.
- Thrillers: The X Gamers, skateboarders and thrill-seekers of the generation.
- Quality seekers: Want high-quality products at a reasonable price, like Trader Joe's.
Stay tuned for more research and discussions around marketing to Gen X in upcoming blogs.