Baby Boomer social media use would seem to run a distant second to Millennials who seem constantly connected to social channels.
But, for a variety of reasons, Baby Boomers are the hugest opportunity of any generation. Trends show Baby Boomer social media use, even when compared to Millennials, is growing faster and is more likely to trigger buying behaviors.
Here are 15 persuasive findings on Baby Boomer social media use.
1, BABY BOOMERS ARE THE FASTEST GROWING SEGMENT: Young adults were among the earliest social media adopters and continue to use these sites at high levels, but usage by older adults has increased in recent years with 50+ growing fastest. (Pew Research Center)
2. BABY BOOMERS SPEND MORE TIME ONLINE: They spend 27 hours per week online, 2 hours per week more than those between the ages of 16 and 34. (Colorado University)
3. VIRTUALLY ALL BABY BOOMERS USE SOCIAL MEDIA, MOSTLY FACEBOOK: 82.3% belong to at least once social networking site with Facebook being the most popular. (DMN3)
4. BABY BOOMER SOCIAL MEDIA USE RESULTS IN ACTIONS: This segment takes action based on what they see on social media, and most of the time it’s focused on finding more information. More than half of Leading-Edge Boomers visit a company website or continue the search on a search engine after seeing something on a social networking site. (DMN3)
5. BABY BOOMERS LOVE TO SHOP ONLINE: 72% of adults aged 55-to-64 shop online, and Boomers outspend younger adults online by 2-to-1 each year. (Forrester)
6. BABY BOOMERS FOLLOW BEFORE THEY BUY: Majority of Baby Boomers (55%) follow a brand before they buy from it and 51% say they are likely to buy from a brand they follow. (Sprout Social Index)
7. DEALS, OFFERS AND PROMOTIONS FIGURE INTO BABY BOOMER SOCIAL MEDIA USE: 60% of baby boomers are looking for promotions on social media (Sprout Social Index)
8. BABY BOOMERS ARE QUIETER AND OBSERVE MORE THAN OTHERS: On a monthly basis, 32% of Gen Xers engage with a brand they follow. That percentage drops slightly to 30% for Millennials. When it comes to Baby Boomers, they’re mainly observers. Only 14% are regularly starting a dialogue or interaction with your brand. (Sprout Social Index)
9. BABY BOOMERS DON’T LIKE BEING OVER-MARKETED: Baby Boomers are most likely to unfollow if they find brands’ posts to be spammy. (Marketing Profs)
10. BABY BOOMERS SHARE MORE OFTEN: Boomer women, in particular, are even more predisposed to sharing, with a 26% greater likelihood, well above the generational average of 19%. Compared to other generations, the types of content besides news that are most likely to get shares are food snapshots (10% more) and cute videos of babies and animals (18% more). (Nielsen)
11. VIDEO IS THE PREFERRED CONTENT FORM FOR BABY BOOMERS: 27% regularly watching video on Facebook. And as is common across the board, short-form video is the most preferred, with 70% wanting video under five minutes and over a third saying they want videos under three minutes. (Neilsen)
12. BABY BOOMER SOCIAL MEDIA USE MAKES THEM THE MOST CONCERNED ABOUT SECURITY THREATS: Baby Boomers are the age group that has the least confident that they were protected from a range of security threats. Boomers’ concern for privacy on social media is reflected in their being the most likely to respond “I only allow trusted people to see anything I post and employ a lot of privacy restrictions” when asked about their use of social media for personal reasons (32% to 37% for boomers, 19% to 28% for everyone else). (Forbes)
13. BABY BOOMERS USE LINKEDIN LATE IN THEIR CAREERS AS OFTEN AS ENTRY-LEVEL WORKERS: 13% of internet user 65+ use LinkedIn. This is nearly the same rate as the 18-29 age group. (Post Control Marketing)
14. BABY BOOMERS HAVE THE NUMBERS AND THE DOLLARS: Adults 50+ represent 50% of the U.S. population but shis 50+ year-old population controls 70% of the United States disposable income, and will inherit $15 trillion over the next 20 years. In addition, Baby Boomers spend the most money across every product category out of any other generation, but are only targeted by 5-10% of marketers (AARP)
15. BABY BOOMER LOVE THE INTERNET: Boomers were the least likely to respond that they use the internet infrequently. For example, 7% of older millennials (ages 25 to 34) and 9% of Gen X’ers aged 35 to 44 described themselves with the statement “I go online very infrequently (some weeks I may not go online at all)” as compared to 2% of those 55 and older. (Forbes)
Do these fact Baby Boomer social media use persuade you about the opportunity. Does your business need help in marketing to baby boomers?