August 27, 2019
Those darn Millennials always on their phones these days! Or is it the Baby Boomers that can’t stop staring at their screens? Today, we’re taking a deep dive into how each generation utilizes social media and how you can best reach your target age demographic. Let’s break it down!
First things first, it helps to understand how these groups are defined. It is not just age range. Generations are often divided based on major events – how people reacted, responded, and were affected is crucial to understanding behaviors and tendencies.
The Silent Generation – 1925-1942
Cautious and conservative, they grew up when America’s economy was at its worst. They value hard work and saving money. For a marketer, that means you have to work hard to earn their trust and your product or service MUST provide value. Most of the Silent Generation, if they have social media, can be found on Facebook.
Key takeaway– Some Seniors are still on social but mainly so that they can stay connected with their kids and grandkids. Look who’s hip now!
Baby Boomers – 1946-1964
Baby Boomers are everywhere! Similar to The Silent Generation, Baby Boomers are more drawn to Facebook. However, they are more likely to be on other social media platforms as well; Pinterest is their second favorite! Because they are more likely to be homeowners and ‘splurge,’ Pinterest is a great tool for them to use to gather inspiration.
Key takeaway– Baby Boomers are tech savvy and like to spend their money! Targeting ads for Boomers is crucial.
Generation X – 1970s-1980s
Also known as the “latchkey generation,” this is the majority of the current workforce. They grew up with less adult supervision because of higher divorce rates and more women in the workplace (YASSSS!). Heavily influenced by grunge and hip-hop music (meet @IntertwinedMegz), they aren’t afraid to speak their minds and tend to be more entrepreneurial.
Key takeaway– Focus on Facebook AND Instagram. Gen X are utilizing these platforms to get reviews, find tutorials and make well-researched online purchases!
Generation Y (Also known as Millennials) – 1981-1996
There’s a reason why Gen Y are crowned ‘digital natives’ and their use of social media is definitely a major part of that reason. They love to put their lives (both personal and professional) on display and tend to follow their friends’ social media posts more closely than other generations.
Key takeaway– Generation Y has serious FOMO! They check their social media platforms constantly to see if someone has posted something fun and entertaining.Make your posts “infotaining” or you don’t stand a chance of getting their (limited) attention.
Generation Z – 1996-mid 2000s (At this point it’s hard to tell the exact age range, because we’re still basically in it!)
While we used to think that Millennials were the social media obsessed ones, Gen Z are taking this to a whole new level! Rather than spending time updating their statuses and seeing what their friends were up to, Gen Zers use social media as a time-filler. This generation wants to be entertained by using fewer social platforms but spending more time on them.
Key takeaway– Unlike Millennials who are Facebooking and posting IG Stories, Gen Zers are most likely YouTubing, Instagramming, and Snapchatting. Fun content > Friends with this generation!
Generation Alpha – 2011-????
Bet you didn’t even know this was a thing yet! These kids were born with an iPad in their hands. They don’t know a life without technology and are entirely dependent on it. Smart TVs, phones, and tablets you name it! How they utilize social media will be exciting to see in years to come!
And there’s that! A complete breakdown of every generation! Our #majorkey takeaway? Don’t put all those eggs in one Social Media basket! Make sure you are creating content and posting on the platforms that resonate most with your target generation!