Not Your Average Consumer; Packaging design strategies to target Baby Boomers

Not Your Average Consumer; Packaging design strategies to target Baby Boomers


War in Europe is over! Japan has tendered its unconditional surrender! In the years following World War II (roughly mid 1940’s – mid 1960’s), an unprecedented number of babies were born. Colloquially known as the “Baby Boomers”, this generation has been the largest in both numbers and socio-economic influence. They have essentially shaped our modern day global landscape as we know it.

There are roughly 76 million boomers in the United States alone and have enjoyed the longest period of prosperity compared to their predecessors. On average, baby boomers have the highest disposable income to burn; approximately $8000 per capita spending. Marketing experts have been looking at this demographic with dollar signs in their eyes; how can you capitalize on this market through effective packaging design, graphic design, ecommerce marketing campaigns, branding and retail displays.

So what attracts the aesthetic eye of the stereotypical Boomer?

  1. Brand loyalty and trust. Boomers are loyal; it is important to remain consistent across all ecommerce and social media platforms. Ensuring consistency from your website, Facebook/Instagram/Twitter/Pinterest to your retail displays and packaging will increase brand loyalty.
  2. Tech savvy. Contrary to popular belief, Boomers are adaptable. They have seen a tremendous amount of change in their 45-65 years; the collap(ses) of the stock market, war, and the tech boom. While it is Millenials that dominate online shopping via mobile devices, Boomers are still actively making puchases online. Facebook is also their chosen social media platform. When thinking digital marketing campaigns, think image heavy and descriptive. Unlike Millenials, Boomers appreciate clear, obvious and reliable communication; avoid acronyms or confusing slang. While current trends in packaging design indicate that minimalism, acronyms and light text are heavy hitters, Boomers still look to have their questions answered and products explained directly on the label.

Its all about the lifestyle. As the Baby Boomer generation ages, companies are looking more and more to appeal to the idea of a healthy, active and youthful lifestyle. Needless to say, the experience of purchasing your digestive aids and incontinence pads beside the young, fresh and fun products targeted towards Millenials does not feel awesome. Therefore, companies are adopting design strategies to refresh the feel of their products frequently purchased by this aging demographic. Think bold, bright colours, and graphics which emphasize an energetic and healthy lifestyle. Packaging that is still clear and descriptive, however lends the feeling of youth and vitality will be the key to success.

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