It seems as though whenever you search online for generational sales and marketing strategies, all everyone talks about are millennials. But, what about gen x? This week I’m going to take an in depth look at insurance marketing to generation x. I’ll outline what gen xers value from a broker, how they research and discover suppliers, their preferred modes of communication, and how they prefer to consume content.
GENERATION X IN THE WORKFORCE
Who are Gen Xers?
Generation x is the demographic following the baby boomers (age 54-72) and preceding the Millennials (21-36). Researchers typically range their birth years between the early-to-mid 1960’s to the early 1980’s (age range 37-53). Generation x is the smallest demographic out of the big 3 generations.
However, in the workforce they have significant influence. A study discovered that generation x dominate the playing field with respect to founding startup companies – accounting for more than 55% of new businesses in North America. Another study, which focused on the size and share of workers by occupation across all three generations, found that Gen Xers show up prominently in middle and senior management positions across multiple industries.
Also, even though millennials now make up the majority of the workforce, the gap between them and generation x isn’t that big. Millennials make up 38% of the workforce, and generation x makes up roughly 35% of the US workforce.
Despite this, many B2B brands are guilty of not tailoring their content and messaging to this demographic – and gen xers are well aware of it. 54% of gen xers say they are frustrated that brands constantly ignore them. This creates an opportunity for you to stand out from the crowd by tailoring your marketing to them.
ATTRACTING GEN X TO YOUR BRAND
A study from IBM, found that gen x B2B buyers prioritize:
- A supplier’s ability to deliver their services.
- Reputation for quality products and customer service.
- Marketplace and industry expertise.
Gen xers don’t care for marketing ‘fluff’, they want to know how your services will help them grow their business. They want to know the real world benefits of working with you, and on top of all this they want value for their money.
This demographic really appreciates a deal. Remember, they’ve seen the highs and lows of the economy over the years, perhaps more dramatically than any other generation since the Great Depression. This doesn’t mean you should start dropping prices to an all time low. But, you should be prepared to craft content that clearly explains the value of your services in honest terms.
Most modern consumers will do extensive research online before speaking with you. This means insurance marketing to generation x requires you to speak to these attributes early in the buyer’s journey.
They prefer readable content. According to research, gen xers mainly consume blogs, case studies, infographics, and guides. Readable content like these usually speak to the attributes they value most, like ROI, time saving, and the overall value of a product or service.
Understanding what they value when researching a vendor, gives you various themes to work with for insurance marketing to generation x. For example you can create case studies to highlight how you’ve helped customers solve pain points and improved their business.
Reach out to your long standing customers, and clients who’ve given you positive feedback, and ask them to participate. Set up an interview or send them a survey. Check out my previous blog, Top Picks: Insurance Agency Market Research Tools, for affordable research systems you can use to survey your loyal customers.
Ask for measurable data, like “how much time do you save per month on enrollment since you began working with us?”. For the same purpose, you can also ask “has there been an increase in employee participation for voluntary benefits?”.
To showcase your expertise and industry knowledge, you can start an agency blog. Write on trending topics in the benefits industry. Share your views on the issues and outline how it may impact your clients. With so much going on right now with the future of Affordable Care Act, various healthcare mergers, and the overall benefits industry, there’s a lot for you to draw inspiration from to write your own blog. Check out my previous blog – Starting a Blog for Your Agency to learn how to get started.
We’ve established that gen xers lean towards readable content, but where should you share your content?
- Research has found that 40% of gen xers turn to vendor websites during the research stage.
- Research from the Global Contact Center found that outside of phone calls, gen xers prefer to communicate by email.
Host readable content on your website and use forms to capture contact information so you can send them subsequent marketing content through email.
For example host a few in-depth case studies on your website and ask for a quote as your call to action (CTA). Here’s an example of how marketing automation software company, Hubspot, does it.
Each case study is headlined with specific, quantifiable benefits of using their software.
The case study details various statistics that highlights real world results, and expands further on how their software benefited the company.
At the bottom of the page they have CTA’s in place to convert website visitors into qualified leads.
SEO, your agency’s website, and email are all crucial channels for insurance marketing to generation x. Creating a consistent, seamless experience across these channels through your content and messaging is equally important for an effective modern marketing strategy.
These insights paint the picture of how to approach insurance marketing to generation x. Create readable content like case studies, blog articles, infographics, testimonials, etc. that speak directly to measurable ways in which your services can benefit them.
Post content on your website and optimize it for SEO. Any leads you get that fall in this segment, share follow up content via email. Following these steps will help you provide gen xers with the experience they prefer, and will help you close more sales with this often overlooked, but influential, audience.