Consumers who fall in the age range of 45 to 72 represent a significant portion of the total consumer market across the Middle East. And after a lifetime of hard work and saving, many have the financial wherewithal to be considered amongst the top spenders in the economy. For ecommerce organizations this raises a crucial question; How can I reach these consumers?
This week we’ll be diving into that very question and highlighting some of the best platforms for reaching older generations in the digital space. If your ecommerce is looking to tap into one of the wealthiest generations of shoppers, you’ll want to keep reading.
Don’t Stereotype Shoppers
Before we dive into how older generations are spending their time online, we want to drive home a key point, avoid stereotyping shoppers. Just because older generations are often categorized as offline shoppers doesn’t mean it’s true. In fact, a 2017 report from KPMG found that those over 54 were as likely to shop online as Millennials and on average spent more per transaction. With that statistic in mind it’s not surprising that many businesses are expanding their content marketing strategies to include (and in some cases focus on) older generations.
At its core, content marketing is the act of creating content with the goal of attracting, engaging, and retaining customers. When it comes to reaching older generations, this means marketers need to be aware of their online preferences and entertainment preferences as they distribute content.
As you probably know, Facebook is popular with every generation, but older generations in particular tend to favor the platform over other social media networks.
A study by Northwestern University in Qatar found that 70 percent of Middle Eastern residents over the age 45 use Facebook regularly. In contrast, only 25 percent of these adults use Twitter and even fewer are active on channels such as Instagram and Snapchat. What’s more, older users who are active on Facebook spend a considerable amount time on the platform (as much as 20 hours per week) and are far more likely to fully read and share posts. For any ecommerce content marketers out there, these facts lead to one conclusion: Facebook is an amazing distribution platform for content targeted at older generations.
Of course, the fundamentals of content marketing still apply. If you really want older consumers to engage with your content you need to create useful, informative, and entertaining content that is relevant to their interests and needs. Once you’ve established the type of content that works for your business (A/B testing anyone?), focus on distributing teasers, graphics, or short videos that drive traffic back to your ecommerce website.
About 40 percent of Middle Eastern residents over the age of 45 are regular YouTube users and like younger generations, this demographic largely spends time on the platform to learn new skills, for entertainment, or more recently to find reviews and suggestions on what to buy.
One key difference between older and younger generations is patience. While younger generations are becoming more accustomed to short concise content that’s direct and to the point, older consumers are far more willing to watch longer form content that provides a more in-depth overview of a topic.
Unfortunately, many digital marketers tend to generalize folks in an older demographics as less tech-savvy and therefore try to reach them using traditional media and write off YouTube all together. This is becoming less true every year and for content marketers YouTube represents a powerful tool for reaching older consumers.
When we talk about marketing to a specific generation such as consumers who are 45+, we are engaging in a tactic called generational marketing or generational segmentation. Like other forms of segmentation used in the marketing world, this technique is all about understanding what a group of consumers has in common and creating marketing material that appeals to those shared interests. The better we segment a group, the more successful we may be at creating and delivering impactful content.