Need help with my Marketing question – I’m studying for my class.
Put yourself in the role of a marketer at Disney Cruise Lines that wants to sell a cruise package to each generation explained on pages on pages 209-211: Greatest Generation, Silent Generation, Baby Boomers, Generation X, Millennials, and Generation Z. What would be your marketing slogan for EACH of the groups? What marketing medium would you use and why? What consumer behavior aspect impacted each generation? DUE on or before WEDNESDAY. Reply substantively to two other learners.
gReateSt geneRatIon The term “greatest generation” refers to American consumers who were young adults during World War II. These consumers were born prior to 1928. They represent approximately 11.5 million consumers living today. Their lives and values are shaped very much by World War II and their post-war experiences. These consumers tend to be more thrifty than other consumers and thus are highly price conscious. These consumers have reached their elderly years. A somber occasion was marked on June 6, 2014, which was the 70th anniversary of the D-Day invasion of then-occupied Europe by Allied troops. Several veterans returned to attend the ceremonies, and others have attended since then as well.
SIlent geneRatIon Silent generation consumers were born between 1928 and 1945. Two major events occurred during this time period. The first major event was the Great Depression, which began in 1929. The second major event was, of course, World War II. These consumers were greatly impacted by these events and, like their predecessors, are known for civic duty, conformity, and responsibility. They tend to be frugal and follow largely utilitarian motivations with their purchases. This segment is comprised of approximately 40 million consumers in the United States today.
BaBy BooMeRS The Baby Boomers were born between 1946 and 1964. Approximately 74.9 million Americans are Boomers. Boomers were born during a time in the United States that was marked by optimism and relative economic security. Many of these consumers came of age during the very turbulent 1960s, and they clearly left a mark on popular culture. Boomers represent a major force in consumer culture, and they are a substantial force in the economy. It should not be surprising, therefore, that they receive significant marketing attention. Many Boomers have
saved significant sums of money for retirement and plan to enjoy good times well into their elderly years. Boomers, by and large, have a huge amount of spending power relative to other generations. They are characterized by a preference for wine and the finer things. Although mortality will eventually lead to a decline in baby boom consumers, trends in fertility rates and migration are expected to sustain the number of older American consumers into the distant future. In fact, it has been projected that the number of U.S. consumers aged 65 or older will reach nearly 85 million by 2050.19 The Baby Boomers enjoyed the designation as the largest cohort in the U.S. until recently, when the Millennials overtook this honor.
geneRatIon x Generation X consumers were born between 1965 and 1980. They represent 65 million consumers million consumers. Generation X consumers were long thought to be a group that was marked by alienation and cynicism. They have also been referred to as “latchkey” kids to signify the idea that many of these consumers spent a great deal of time alone due to having both parents at work. Many Generation Xers also came from divorced households, which may explain why a good number of these consumers today focus strongly on the family and traditional family values. Although marketers often viewed Generation Xers as slackers, many of these consumers have become successful business people and community leaders. Research also reveals that the majority of these consumers started saving money relatively early in life.20
MIllennIalS Millennials were born between 1981 and 1995. They represent approximately 75.4 million in the United States. This group was originally referred to as Generation Y. A lot of research attention has been focused on this group not only because of its sheer size, but also because its members are so different from other cohorts. It is important to realize that in 2016 this group was recognized as being even larger in sheer numbers than the Baby Boomers.21
These consumers tend to wholeheartedly embrace technology as no other generation before them. Many of them were cocooned by protective parents when they were young and tend to view technology as a means to build community and relationships. They also tend to keep close contact with their parents.22 They tend to be relatively impulsive and optimistic. One of the consumer behaviors that Millennials enjoy is visiting coffee shops with in-store WiFi. In this way, they stay connected to their friends and to their interests. Younger consumers in this group tend to be so technologically savvy that they have been referred to as the first “always connected” generation, meaning that they are constantly in touch with other consumers through various technologies.23 Of course, the older Millennials did not grow up in the same technological environment as did the younger consumers in this group. This is why only a part of this group, those in their early twenties, are referred to as “digital natives.”24 Regardless, even the older Millennials are more tech-savvy than the general population, and they do tend to be always connected. Millennials would prefer to walk rather than drive, live in urban settings than in rural settings, and live in smaller, rather than larger, homes. The very way in which they view the concept of “freedom” is also unique. For Millennials, freedom is more closely associated with having access to the Internet and social networking sites than with the automobile. Their parents tended to view the automobile as the key to freedom. Millennials, as a group, do not. Millennials tend to be optimistic even though older consumers in this group have been greatly impacted by economic challenges. Many of these consumers are underemployed, taking whatever job will help to pay bills, and a number of them have taken unpaid internships simply to gain experience. Economic pressures have led many of them to delay marriage and even to move in with parents for financial reasons.25 Research also reveals that these pressures lead many Millennials to make poor choices with their finances, such as accumulating debt and saving little. Many consumers in this group see no problem with living with their parents into their late twenties. geneRatIon Z Much attention has been given to the Millennial group, and rightfully so. However, another group of interest is “Generation Z.” This group follows the Millennials and represents young consumers born between 1995 and 2010. The number of people in this group is smaller than the Millennials, with approximately 30 million consumers in the United States. Research suggests that they will be the most educated, diverse, and mobile group to date. They will also be the first truly “global” generation, due to racial and cultural diversity, increased population mobility and migration, and comfort with mobile technologies.26 They also tend to embody the “KGOY” concept (kids growing older, younger) since information is spread so quickly through the group by social media and texting. Given that many of these young consumers grew up with concepts like “tagging” and “liking” Facebook pages, they are also more attuned to concepts like viral marketing and self-endorsements than is any other group.27 One of the biggest challenges for marketers and employers will be how to communicate with these consumers. Given that this generation has grown up with Internet and smartphone jargon, their use of everyday language has been affected. Popular acronyms like “LOL” and “ROTFL” have now entered into everyday conversations. This is not to suggest that these are not serious consumers. Quite the contrary. In fact, they can quickly see through marketing hype that does not come across as sincere. Consumer researchers will continue to monitor this group as they come of age.
geneRatIonal InFluenCe and MaRketIng
Generations provide a good basis for marketing segments because a consumer’s age identifies his or her generation. Not every person that is age 21 right now matches the tastes of all the other Millennial generation consumers, but the largest number of people within a generation are similar to some extent. McDonald’s recent strategies illustrate the difference between appealing to an age group versus a cohort group. For decades, practically every McDonald’s featured a playground built conspicuously at the front of each restaurant. Not only that, consumers also strongly associated the Happy Meal with McDonald’s. Thus, in consumers’ long-term memories, McDonald’s was strongly defined by the play area, Happy Meals, and children. In the past few years, McDonald’s has moved away from that strategy and has even removed the play areas from many of their restaurants. In some cases, they have been replaced with sections called McCafé. The Happy Meal still remains, but the shift in their marketing corresponds to the fact that they are more interested in serving the markets that grew up playing in the playgrounds and eating Happy
Meals than they are in directly appealing to children themselves. In a way, McDonald’s has shifted from looking at the markets based on their age to one where they are capitalizing on a cohort group. Millennial generation consumers won’t be found in the play area any longer, but you can still find them at McDonald’s. Generational effects can also explain why country music has changed so dramatically over the years. Have you ever wondered why today’s country music doesn’t sound like your grandpa’s country? The answer lies largely in the fact that many of today’s biggest stars grew up listening to classic or even alternative rock music. As you may have noticed, much of country music has a rock-edge sound to it. In some cases, it’s even hard to tell the difference between today’s country and rock music. Many of today’s country music stars were just as likely to listen to rock groups such as REM, Aerosmith, or Dave Matthews Band when they were growing up as to traditional country legends like Willie Nelson or Johnny Cash. Comparing today’s country music star in his 30s with a country music star of the same age in 1950 clearly illustrates how generations change.
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