Boomers and Millennials’ Brand Preferences

GM developed the slogan “This is not your father’s Oldsmobile” in the 80’s to attract younger drivers with the idea that younger audiences simply don’t like what their parents do.  Generational marketing focuses on an age group’s opinions and values defined by political, cultural and social events.

Delving into the E-Score Brand database, we looked at the universe of nearly 1,200 brands tracked to determine which factors drive appeal for brands among the Baby Boomer generation as compared those appealing to the Millennials.

Key Drivers of Brand Appeal

For our study, Millennials are defined as those born between 1977 and 1994. Baby Boomers are born between 1949 and 1964. For each generational group we looked at the top 10% most appealing brands by top-two box appeal (“like a lot” or “like”).

Each brand is evaluated for 39 different attributes. Among these elite brands, we ranked the average scores for each attribute to demonstrate their relative importance in driving high brand appeal.  The resulting lists looked quite different for each generational cohort.

Source: E-Score Brand, >10% Awareness, top 10% of brands by top-two box appeal (like a lot or like), filtered by Baby Boomers and Millennials

While both groups gave high marks to attributes such as A Leader, High-Quality and Classic, there were clear differences in the respective lists.  Millennials see Cool as the 10th most important attribute contrasting with Baby Boomers who place it 25th.  The apparently cynical Millennials place Trustworthy at 16th where Baby Boomers place it 8th.  The Millennials, products of the mass marketing era and crave differentiation, place Unique at 12th; while Boomers place Unique just 24th.  Millennials see Approachable as less important in the 21st spot but Boomers place it much higher at 14th.

E-Score Brand has the ability to dissect opinions of brands based on age and generation.  A brand looking to extend or re-position its product to other ages can see which attributes deserve more attention in their promotions and which attributes may deserve less.

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