How to Market to the Different Generations

How to Market to the Different Generations

 August 1, 2016

Check out a headline or two, and you’ll see something about what Millennials like or how Baby Boomers act. We’re all constantly grouped into one demographic or another. In life, it’s not good to assume all people of a specific age or generation act alike. In marketing, however, you need to be able to narrow your efforts, and grouping people by their age is one way to simplify things.

Take a look at few key things to keep in mind when marketing your real estate business to the different generations. Whether you’re targeting a specific buyer group or you simply need an overview of what each group responds to, you may be surprised at much they have in common. With a few tweaks to your message or your online presence, you may be able to touch all three groups.


Born between 1980 and 1995, the Millennials have only recently surpassed Baby Boomers as the largest demographic. Many of them are at the age where they’re ready to consider buying a home. If they are the demographic you want to win over, you’ll need to understand a few things about them:

  • Many are reeling from high student loan debt and lack of available jobs in their fields since college. They’re putting off starting families and buying homes because of this. Educate these potential buyers on how to save for a down payment and bust the myth that 20 percent down is the “norm.”
  • You’ll need a strong online presence. This generation grew up with the internet and are very comfortable going online first.
  • Make sure your efforts are mobile friendly. More than 25 percent use their phone as their primary device. Your website should be mobile responsive, and you’ll need to be on social media in some form.
  • Facebook is one of the most popular sites for Millennials, followed closely by YouTube.

Generation X

The Gen-X’ers, born between 1965 and 1979, are often the forgotten group between Millennials and Baby Boomers but this group has buying power that shouldn’t be ignored. While they didn’t grow up with internet and technology, they’ve adapted nicely.

  • This is the group that had more latchkey kids than any other. They’re independent and not easily swayed. Be prepared to convince them of your claims with facts and research.
  • Generation X responds well to testimonials and reviews. They want to know what other people’s experiences have been to gauge whether you’re the one to do business with.
  • They don’t follow trends easily, and they’re comfortable with a mix of digital and traditional marketing. Feel free to send the postcard and the email newsletter.
  • You’ll definitely find this group on Facebook, but they’re also on Twitter in large numbers, too.

Baby Boomers

Until recently, Baby Boomers (1946 to 1964) were the most populous group with the most buying power. Even though Millennials have overtaken them, this isn’t a group to dismiss.

  • Baby Boomers consume the most amount of content of any of the groups. They prefer to research and get their information together before making a decision.
  • Phone calls and emails are effective as they prefer a personal touch.
  • This generation, as a group, values trust, loyalty, and community. Once they know you’re the agent who can help them, they’ll likely stick with you.
  • Don’t discount Baby Boomers as being technophobes. They’re on Facebook almost as much as every other demographic, and they read blog posts more than any other online content.

The generations aren’t that much different from each other, and as you well know, many people don’t fall within the stereotypes of their age groups. Keep their preferences in mind as you build your marketing plan and decide where to focus your efforts, but don’t forget that everyone is unique. If you share good information, make it easy for people to find you, and always keep people first, business will follow.

Michaela Mitchell

By Michaela Mitchell

Former Communications Director for a local Realtor Association and a big cheerleader for all things real estate related, Michaela is now a full-time freelance writer specializing in real estate and other business industries. When she's not writing the serious business-y stuff, she's likely to be found writing about the hilarity of being a Mom to two rowdy boys.