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Generational marketing: In-store marketing for every generation

You’ve seen hundreds of articles about how to market to Gen Z and Millennials. While these two young generations make up a big chunk of the shopping population, this doesn’t mean that we should forget about the older population. 

In this article, we are going to focus on generational marketing in-store tactics. We are going to take a look at the characteristics and preferences of each generation, from The Silent Generation to Gen Z-ers, and spot the best in-store tactics and strategies you can use to attract their attention. 

The importance of in-store marketing

First, let’s talk a bit about the marketing in-store. While digital marketing seems to be the focus of more and more brands and retailers, it’s important to not forget the impact of in-store marketing. 

In-store marketing is a type of marketing that allows you to connect and engage customers right at the point of sale. This last-mile advertising strategy offers you the opportunity to attract the attention of shoppers while they are already inside the store. 

Since they are in the store, it means that they are prepared to make a purchase. However, they have to choose from hundreds of products from different brands. This is when your in-store marketing tactics kick in. You have the opportunity to make your brand and products stand out. 

Successful in-store marketing campaigns help increase brand awareness, revenue, and shopper engagement. Now that we know the power of in-store marketing, let’s see what makes every generation purchase more.

Generational marketing in-store 

Generational marketing is a marketing strategy that uses age group segmentation in marketing communication. Generational marketing tactics started to develop once marketers observed that each age group or generation responds to different messages and types of campaigns on different channels. 

Gen Z

We are going to start with the youngest generation on the market. Here are a few things you should know when you want to develop in-store marketing tactics for them.

Characteristics

Gen Zers are the most tech-savvy generation and they can easily learn to use anything digital. People who are a part of the Gen Z generation were born between 1997 and 2012. The younger Gen Zers don’t have their own money to purchase products at the moment. However, they can influence the purchasing decisions of their parents. 

Gen Zers are expecting much more than a product when they shop in-store, they want a complete experience. Expect to have all of your products reviewed online by a Gen Zer before they head into the store to make a purchase. 

In-store marketing strategies: 

  • Influencer marketing campaign

If you want to attract the attention of a shopper from this generation, you need to focus on influencer marketing. You might say that an influencer marketing campaign can only be implemented on social media. Well, that’s not completely true. Danone managed to implement a successful influencer marketing campaign in-store

  • Provide shareable experiences

Another thing Gen Zers love is sharing their experiences on social media. Make sure that your campaigns are shareable and “Instagramable”. Focus on visual merchandising to make your products more attractive. Also, using an in-store marketing robot like Tokinomo can turn a simple campaign into a viral one. 

  • Showcase your social initiatives in campaigns

Last but not least, people from this young generation focus a lot on social causes. The majority of consumers (70%) believe it’s important for brands to take a public stand on social and political issues. Include information about your recent green marketing initiatives and show what your brand is doing to make the world a better place. 

Millennials

We’ve all heard at least one joke about Millennials, right? They are the most talked about generation and represent the largest group of consumers. 

Characteristics

Millennials are born between 1981 and 1996 and they are the first generation that grew up with technology. This generation puts a lot of emphasis on authenticity and that’s what they are looking for. Millennials are also focusing on healthy living so they might be more likely to purchase organic and bio products. 

This generation trusts word-of-mouth marketing more than anything else and that’s why they also review products online before buying in-store. 

In-store marketing strategies:

  • Loyalty programs

85% of Millennials say the loyalty program has enhanced their experience of the brand. Millennials love to save up money by joining different loyalty programs. Also, they like additional benefits and loyalty programs make them feel special. 

  • Storytelling at the point of sale

An important marketing tactic that you should try to attract Millennials is including storytelling in your in-store campaigns. As you know, shopping is an emotion-based decision and stories are a great way to trigger those emotions. 

  • Impulse buying

Millennials are calculated spenders, but they tend to buy impulsively, especially smaller, cheaper products. Integrating an impulse purchase strategy into your in-store marketing efforts is a great way to engage Millennials. 

Generation X

Moving on to one of the smallest generations, Gen X is also known as the “forgotten generation”. 

Characteristics

Born between 1965 and 1980, people from Gen X grew up in a recession period and experienced many social changes. The challenging times they grew up in shaped their behavior and preferences. 

Gen X shoppers are more cautious with money and are a bit skeptical about brands. People from Gen X prefer to stick to what they know and like, instead of accepting change.

In-store marketing strategies:

  • In-store promotions

Since they grew up during a recession period, Gen X shoppers like to save up on their purchases. In-store promotions will help you attract their attention and persuade them to shop for more products. 

  • Coupons

Another great way to engage this generation is to provide coupons. Since they like to save up, coupons are a great incentive for Gen X. Also, you could consider other incentives such as free samples or price reductions. 

  • Clear positioning and messaging

Gen X shoppers want to know exactly what they are buying. Every campaign you create in-store needs to contain a clear message. Also, if you want Gen X to make a purchase make it easy for them to do so. 

Baby Boomers

Our older generation that was born right before World War II is known as Baby Boomers. This is the generation with the most purchasing power and discretionary income which shows you that you need to pay more attention to the older generation.

Characteristics

This generation grew up in a time of economical growth, right after the War. After the War, more and more people were born so that’s how the generation got this name. Born between 1946 and 1964, Baby Boomers are not as tech-averse as you might think. Since they grew up without modern technology, they only use it when they think it is productive and makes their lives easier. 

In-store marketing strategies:

  • Loyalty programs

Another generation that loves a good loyalty program. Baby Boomers tend to be loyal customers and this type of program shows them that you reward loyalty. You can either offer them discounts on certain products or freebies. 

  • Weekly Brochure

Baby Boomers love to stay informed about new promotions and products. A weekly brochure that they can read in-store will attract their attention. When they see your latest promotions they will be more likely to make a purchase. 

  • Great customer service in-store

While it’s not an in-store marketing strategy per se it is an amazing way to turn Baby Boomers into loyal customers. They love to talk to retail employees and to find out their honest opinion regarding different products. Train your employees to be friendly and provide help to shoppers in-store. 

The Silent Generation

Last but not least, the oldest generation that is shopping in your store is known as The Silent Generation. 

Characteristics

The Silent Generation was born between 1928 and 1945. These people are looking for essential products and items that will make their life easier. The Silent Generation values stability and has a strong sense of loyalty. They also value the relationship they create with the retailer they shop from. 

In-store marketing strategies:

  • Straightforward campaigns

A person over 77 is not going to like a campaign that is hard to understand or that has multiple steps. If you want to implement an in-store promotion targeting this generation, you need to make it simple and easy to understand. 

  • Focus on own brands

Older people are not really interested in the latest brands so this might be the best generation to target if you want to promote owned brands. The Silent Generation is looking for a good price-to-quality ratio and owned brands usually have that. 

  • Representation in campaigns

Lastly, if you want to attract the attention of the older generation include them in your campaigns. Most brands focus on the younger generation and seem to forget about older shoppers. Include pictures of older people in campaigns and focus on the family because the older generation values family and the community. 

Marketing to each generation in-store

Generational marketing helps you understand the differences and similarities between each generation and how you can better attract the attention of each age group. While Millennials and Gen Z are the new, tech-oriented generation, it doesn’t mean that you should forget about older consumers. 

Don’t take older shoppers for granted and create campaigns that attract their attention as well. Also, don’t be fooled by stereotypes, older shoppers are not as tech-averse and are willing to try new things (or products) as long as they pique their interest. 

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