Wayne Langley

I remember visiting my grandparents as a child for two weeks each summer. As I grew older, I watched them transition from their working days to retirement. At that time, the shift towards retirement often meant a slower pace of life, a casual retreat from social circles and carefully budgeted spending. Even though I now value those lazy days sitting on the front porch learning from my grandparents, I didn’t realize that the journey they were on was transforming the experiences they would encounter for years to come. As consumers, my grandparents seemingly became virtually irrelevant to marketers of their day.

Oh, how things have changed. The Boomers are of utmost interest in today’s economy because, in most cases, they approach aging so differently than did their parents. They are active, independent, self-reliant and are positively anticipating the experiences ahead. The first generation to “work hard, play hard” isn’t going to slow down just because its cohorts can start collecting social security.

In my work, I have opportunity to interact almost daily with Boomers who are now at the same life stage that my grandparents were at when I was a young boy. As I listen to Boomers, I’m learning that they see their journey as anything but slow-paced, and they’ll spend a lot along the way, buying about 36 percent of new cars and accounting for 80 percent of all travel expenses. In fact, Boomers are planning to spend more money during retirement than did any generation before them. There’s no doubt about it—the Boomer experience will be different.

Given these dramatic shifts, what are you doing to position your products and services to meet the higher expectations of Boomers? Does your team understand the Boomer mindset? Is your buying process easy to maneuver? Do your organization’s physical assets capitalize on what Boomers value?

In my new role as vice president of planning and performance at Varsity, I help companies answer questions like these. By carefully evaluating your people, processes and property, we uncover opportunities to create a buying experience that resonates with today’s demanding Boomer audience.

If you would like a planning and performance assessment or have a particular challenge you would like to discuss, please email me at wlangley@varsitybranding.com.