This morning I had the pleasure of presenting "The New Rules of Marketing and PR" to a group of 100 senior marketing leaders who attended Hanley Wood's American Housing Conference in Chicago. The professionals attending the full conference include Building Product Manufacturers, Home Builders, Full-Service Remodelers, Architects, Dealers, and Distributors.
Hanley Wood commissioned a study of baby boomers for the conference, and I found the data fascinating for any organization that needs to reach baby boomers and sell them anything related to housing. Frank Anton, CEO of Hanley Wood kicked off the demographics study of what Hanley-Wood has dubbed "Boomfluentials" (note – with this real-time blog post written during the study results session of the conference, I win for using this newly coined term first in cyberspace).
Here are my notes from the boomfluentials housing demographic study:
There are 80 million baby boomers, and the first are turning 60 this year. Every 8 seconds somebody turns 60. These people will continue to be the primary driver of housing trends as they have been since the 1960s. Every important trend in the housing market has been triggered by the baby boom. (Boomers needed apartment rentals in the 60s, starter homes in 70s, a move up house in 80s, a luxury home in 90s, and a vacation home and smaller luxury home boom in 2000s.) These demographics drive the housing business.
The Boomfluentials demographics for study = $100K plus income / current homeowner / 50-60 years old now. (This represents 8% of boomers – leading boomers influence others who are less wealthy and younger.) Full reseach available here.
Important trends for this demographic:
"Complete rejection of the status quo."
"Make it new. Make it different. Make it mine."
"65 isn’t old anymore."
"We don’t want to become old and just do nothing."
80 percent of this group will move homes. People are planning to age where they are living now. Boomers want things to be easy – no grass cutting, no painting, easy parking.
When they move:
51% want to live in American Southeast
14 percent want to live in cities
14 percent in mountains
Small cities, college towns & suburbs are popular
"It’s all about me."
"Because I've earned it."
"I want it all."
"I’m moving forward, not backward."
"Cleaner more contemporary design"
Old people have homes that look old
Vintage = "project" = "work" = no good
"Downsized but upscale" is popular (like their preference in cars).
Want to entertain friends and family, but don't want kids and grandkids people living with them.
They want a house of the best quality materials
They are quality conscious, but not brand aware.
No This Old House.
No Martha Stewart.
Many people don't care about re-sale potential – they want what works for them now.