Don’t focus solely on millennials; baby boomers need your services, too.
Insurance agents focus much of their attention on the millennial generation — and rightly so. At 86 million strong, millennials represent the largest generation in U.S. history, and therefore, an enormous sales opportunity for the insurance industry (even more so now that they’re finally warming up to the idea of insurance). Yet insurance agents shouldn’t neglect the next largest cohort — baby boomers. Born between 1946 and 1964, baby boomers total some 77 million, accounting for half of the U.S. population and, more importantly, wielding 70% of its disposable income. Obviously, they have money to spend, so why not persuade them to put those dollars into products that insure their financial futures and assets?
Marketing to boomers requires unique tactics specifically geared toward this powerful, smart generation. Successfully selling to baby boomers can be a boon to your business.
Tech Savvy, But Prefer the Personal Touch
Don’t assume baby boomers are tech dinosaurs. According to eMarketer, more than 87% of boomers own smartphones. Further, a study by marketing firm DNM3 revealed more than 90% of boomers use email and search engines, and shop online for products and services. Boomers are definitely comfortable with technology (they love Facebook) and will likely scan your website before contacting you, so be sure to include marketing materials highlighting their generation. However, although they may search for information online, boomers also prefer a personal touch and typically opt for face-to-face meetings when making an insurance decision. When purchasing a Medicare Supplement product, for example, Gen Re reported 65% baby boomers engaged in a live meeting with an agent. As Cam Marston, Founder of demographic profiling firm Generational Insights, says, “Baby boomers aren't loyal to technology. They’re loyal to people.”
Two Generations in One
As with any large population, baby boomers are not monolithic. Rather they segment into two distinct groups, each with very different mindsets. “Leading” baby boomers born between 1946 and 1955 want to maintain a comfortable lifestyle once they enter retirement — if they haven’t already. Decumulation products like annuities help them do that by ensuring they won’t “outlive” their finances. Meanwhile, “trailing” boomers born between 1956 and 1964 worry they haven’t saved enough for retirement and realize their golden years may be decades away. Trailing baby boomers, therefore, look to agents and advisors for help in structuring their finances so they can lower their debt and fund their retirement.
They’re Not Old!
This an active generation that hates being called old. Of course, that doesn’t mean they should ignore funding their healthcare needs later in life. Connect with this generation by purchasing insurance leads for Medicare insurance plans and long-term care insurance. Also discuss how your baby boomer clients can obtain discounts on their auto insurance policies. Even though they may have already paid off their home mortgage, boomer homeowners still need insurance to protect their property, so check if they have adequate coverage.
They’re Long-Term Thinkers
Despite market volatility, baby boomers tend to stick with their retirement plan. In a recent survey by MassMutual, 74% of respondents between the ages of 50 and 64 favored maintaining their current savings strategy. The percentage was much higher -- 82% -- for people 65 and older. (By way of comparison, only 23% of millennials expressed a preference for staying with their current plans.) Baby boomers desire a steadier approach to investments, so continually proposing new investment strategies may fail to entice to them. They have a longer-term vision in mind.
Gain Their Trust
Foster trust by demonstrating your knowledge and how you can help them achieve their goals and solve their challenges. Instead of a sales pitch, get to know their life story and acknowledge their accomplishments. Position yourself as a committed member of a team always ready when needed. And since no two baby boomers are alike, customize solutions for each. Once you’ve earned their trust, baby boomers can be a great referral source. They’re more likely to recommend you to their friends and families.