Commentary

Red, White And Boomer - Presidential Election 2012

Politicians and the media's attention will be on consumers ages 47-67 (Baby Boomers) this year for the Presidential election. Occasionally, I still have to educate young media buyers on this significant demographic -- not sure what marketing classes are teaching in colleges these days. How does a marketing or media curriculum overlook the significance of 78 million individuals holding 70% of the U.S. wealth?

Political consciousness and activism consumed the influential years of this giant generation. Baby Boomers grew up with the threat of a nuclear attack, redefining women's roles, the Vietnam War and social justice for the oppressed. Voting, speaking up and showing up is in their DNA. 

Election 2012 – 2 Key Areas at Stake for Baby Boomers

Health Issues. Baby Boomers will find a way to improve their health and extend vitality. Have you noticed the proliferation of products and services in recent years? Viagra, anti-age creams, health spas, Porsche and Mercedes as dream cars, pharmaceuticals, colonoscopies, fitness centers, nip-and-tuck surgeries and medical travel to name a few. 

Health concerns include:

  • Their own health
  • Their spouse's health
  • Parents’ health and well- being because they are caregivers.
  • Health access
  • Health costs
  • Health policies
  • Health insurance

Wealth. Baby Boomers have done financially better than their parents (Silent Generation), on average achieving higher incomes and accumulated wealth.

Wealth concerns include:

  • Social Security
  • Wealth Preservation
  • Inheritance laws
  • Tax laws
  • Social programs
  • Health care costs

Baby Boomers have long been activists and politically involved. I can assure you this election will be no different – just due to shear size of this grand group. What's different is how politicians reach them with their advertising messages. Boomers spend more time online each week than Gen X or Y. They are researching health issues online, planning trips, playing brain games and staying socially connected. And note they are also the largest demographic group purchasing tablets.

Indeed, Baby Boomers will rock the vote. They are the knowledge generation reinventing themselves as well as writing software programs, drawing blue prints for homes, consulting, marketing, doctoring, inspiring others and changing history because they have the most at stake. 

5 comments about "Red, White And Boomer - Presidential Election 2012 ".
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  1. Joshua Iverson from iMediaSalesTeam, June 18, 2012 at 10:42 a.m.

    Absolutely agree Nancy and I can confirm we are seeing this with decent dollars being spend by Romney and Obama. I will add that it is essential that media companies have segments for Obama to target left leaning boomers/seniors and have conservative segments for Romney. Although the national campaigns are actively targeting boomers we hope to see more activity as we can help state elections reach boomers/seniors. One issue we struggle with is that CPMs that political campaigns are willing to pay are generally at the very bottom...so we have challenges in reaching the right 'boomer' for the right price.

  2. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited, June 18, 2012 at 11:03 a.m.

    Now can credit default swaps be explained in comprehensible terms so that the voters know have the investments know what happened to them and why ?

  3. Mark Van Osdol from Stahls, June 18, 2012 at 12:22 p.m.

    In addition to their large numbers Baby Boomers have outsize influence in elections due to their reliability to actually vote vs younger generations. While people speculate if the "youth vote" will turn out for Obama like in 2008 the election will be decided by Boomers.

  4. Cheryl Valice from Navigate Boomer Media, June 18, 2012 at 2:47 p.m.

    Definitely! For the first time, people over 45 years of age represent a majority of the voting age population… and they vote! In the 2008 election, the US Census Bureau reported that 59% of all Baby Boomers voted, with older Boomers being more likely to vote than younger ones. Boomers over age 55 had a voter turnout of over 70%. Political advertisers need to reach them - even if it costs a little more!

  5. Nancy Driscoll from boomernewsnet.com, June 23, 2012 at 8:15 a.m.

    It is clearly time for boomers to get re-engaged for change. If 70+ million voters demanded real answers, real plans, real analysis we might unlock the gridlock in Washington. We need to rediscover our passion and our power. It's us who really "rock the vote".

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