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Market Research Shows Baby Boomer Attitudes on CPG Spending, Retail Habits

Posted: September 14, 2012

At 80 million strong, baby boomers are one of the largest demographics in the United States. They spent more than $160 billion on packaged goods last year alone and are just entering their golden years, so their impact on the CPG, retail and health care industries will be felt for years to come. The latest SymphonyIRI Times & Trends Report, “Baby Boomers: Riding the Wave of Diversity,” takes a closer look at this complex market segment and helps CPG marketers understand the current and evolving spending habits of the different boomer segments across categories and channels.

Baby boomers—Americans born between 1946 and 1964—are a very large consumer group with an age range that spans nearly 20 years. For this research, SymphonyIRI breaks the group into two segments: older boomers, born 1946–1955, and younger boomers, born 1956–1964, to capture their distinct cultural experiences, lifestyles and attitudes.

“Boomers will experience a broad range of lifestyle changes in the coming years that will dramatically change where and how they shop for consumer packaged goods and what they buy,” says Susan Viamari, editor, Times & Trends, SymphonyIRI. “The important thing for CPG marketers to remember is that boomers are not a homogeneous group, so sweeping strategies will not be effective. By developing highly targeted marketing strategies that are aligned with the needs of key shoppers and consumers, retailers and manufacturers can create shopping experiences that will win share of spending and ongoing loyalty.”

Category Opportunities

Above-average health care spending by boomers translates to the following significant opportunities for marketers of health care and CPG products that help support health and wellness:

Shopper Patterns

The following is a glimpse of the channel share, share shifts and department share insights found in the Times & Trends report: