The Complete Guide to Generation Marketing in 2022

Generation marketing is a strategy that capitalizes on the different media channels that each generation adopts. Here's what you need to know.
generation marketing

As a marketer, knowing how to reach your target audience is essential. Generation marketing takes into account the unique ways each generation absorbs information, including your marketing messages.

What Is Generation Marketing?

At least every ten to fifteen years, which makes a decade or a decade and a half, there is a shift in the way that people think and behave, and that brings about a need for a kind of disruption to the way that things are done. Now, consider the situation when it’s not just a ten to fifteen-year difference that you have to make adjustments for; instead, it is a twenty to thirty-year difference. 

The millennial, for instance, is a generation of people who have a certain way they think and approach things; if you consider this in business, your marketing strategies will have to be structured to appeal to that generation or any other generations your business targets. 

Businesses have their target customers, and there is often a huge degree of competition for them to deal with in order to get across to their target customers and capture their interest and patronage. Small businesses have it the hardest because there is already an existing and thriving brand, usually more than one, with whom they have to compete. Generation marketing refers to a strategy in marketing which specifically meets the needs of and appeals to a given generation. 

A generation is simply a group of people who were born within the same close date range. Their cultural perceptions, ideologies, interests, values, lifestyle and social values will be most likely the same. The things that appeal to them that catch their interest, which they identify with, the way that they see things and their needs.

These all play a huge role in the success of your marketing process. When you have successfully gotten the attention and engagement of a generation during marketing, then you have just successfully done what is called, Generational marketing. 

Why Generation Marketing?

As a business owner, you may have a product that different people need—people of different social backgrounds, different cultures and values and perceptions, and different age groups as well. But will they know how much they need your product? Being able to convince and sell your product to each of these groups of people depends on how they perceive your product or services. You have to help them perceive it as something they need, and how that can happen will differ not just from generation to generation but from person to person. 

There are no two individuals on earth, regardless of how similar we all are, who share exactly the same behavior and perception, which should tell you how important it is to be able to directly address each generation through marketing. At least, there is something about each generation that unifies them—the way they think is the way things capture their interest. If you can find them out, then you will be able to create the right marketing content and message to reach out to them. 

What to Consider in Generation Marketing

What matters to each generation? 

Different generations value different qualities in things; you want to find out what each generation considers as important, and highlight it about your product or service so that every generation marketing scheme directly appeals to the group you have in mind. Let’s take a look at an example. The ways the last two adult generations interact with businesses and brands differ, and you should be able to pick that out.

Generation Z, popularly called Gen Z, has been said to not want to get into anything that takes a lot of their time. They are also less likely to commit to something if it is not very clear at first encounter. Millennials, on the other hand, are more likely to last longer with things even if the results take a little longer. 

Imagine you want to run an ad that advertises a product of yours to a Gen Z audience; the question you want to ask is, “What would matter to this generation about my product and services?” The answer to that question tells you what to about in your marketing copy. The same thing applies to a millennial audience. You need to know what would matter to them about your product before you send out an ad about it to them. 

A Brief Rundown of Generations

There are at least eight social generations, The Lost Generation, The Greatest Generation, The Silent Generation, Baby Boomers, Generation X, Millennial or Generation Y, Generation Z or Gen Z, and Generation Alpha, but we will take a look at some helpful generation marketing tips with regards to the behaviors of the last three adult generations. 

Generation X (1965-1980)

This generation has a social place if you are looking to market online, and that is mostly on Facebook or YouTube; they don’t exactly use Tiktok, Snapchat, Instagram and Twitter as much, but they can be reached via email. 

They are older people, and there are values and cultures that appeal to them, values like authenticity. They will Google and ask people close to them about a thing before they try to buy it. 

They like things that give them the feeling of home and family. They are family people, and they like a bit of comedy. 

Millennial or Generation Y (1981-1996)

This generation is very tech-savvy; they are all over social media and are easily influenced by social media influencers. If a social media figure they trust advertises a brand or product, they are very likely to go for it because of that. 

They are full of entrepreneurs, upcoming brand and business owners, and are always looking for ways that work, but are not afraid to take risks or spend some time working on what they want. They buy a lot from online stores. They are independent people, and they value the experience they get from what they purchase. 

Generation Z (1997-2012)  

This very generation is like Generation Y in many ways, but they don’t have as much patience as Gen Y and are even more independent than some Gen Y. They like things that are flashy, luxurious, quick, and easy—they want to see proofs that something is what it is said to be.

They would rather have something delivered to them than go through the stress of physically purchasing. They value digital products a lot and would have you translate whatever it is you have to offer them into a digital format if it is possible. They fancy innovation a lot and hardly stick with something that does not change form. 

Different generations have different behavioral characteristics, which affect how they perceive and interact with brands and businesses. But they all have one thing in common; they appreciate the use of storytelling in marketing.

Today's Free Templates

Advertising Agency Agreement Template

Sometimes businesses need advertising help. Before you enlist the services of an advertising agency be sure to have them sign an advertising agreement contract.

Affiliate Disclosure

This post may contain affiliate links to help us pay for running the website. See our affiliate disclosure for details. Thanks!

Free Marketing Plan

Download our free marketing plan example to create a detailed plan for your business. Includes sample text, charts and tables.