While we can look just about anywhere to see information about millennials, and even up-and-coming Gen Z shoppers, it’s wise to keep Gen X on the radar when it comes to targeted marketing and presenting new consumer ideas. In fact, smart dealerships everywhere marketing cars are learning the best way to grow their audiences is to offer up messaging that encompasses a variety of consumers, leaning into specific generational interests, influences, and preferences. While younger consumer generations pack a powerful punch in the marketplace, it’s smart to keep an eye on Gen X, as these consumers form a smaller, yet very influential, generation of shoppers.
Dealerships that proactively let shoppers know they’re up for whatever changes the marketplace throws at them will stay ahead of the game when it comes to marketing cars and convincing consumers they can meet a variety of shopper needs. No business can afford to dismiss a consumer group as robust as Gen X, especially since they have more spending power than any other generation. Sure, millennials get a lot of hype—and not without good reason—but at 25% of the adult population and approximately 60 million strong, Gen X boasts numbers that aren’t to be ignored.
It’s easy to think of innovation as something that’s meant for the younger generations, however, Gen X is a leader in the marketplace, and it would be a mistake to discount them when looking at ways your dealership can innovate and drive positive change. Known as relationship builders, Gen-Xers are willing to give their loyalty to businesses that can prove themselves and earn their trust. Not only do they have a strong influence in the marketplace, but they aren’t afraid to leverage that influence and speak up about the brands that catch their eye. Be sure to keep this generation in mind when you’re marketing cars and looking at new ways to reach shoppers and invite them into your dealership.
To get you started, check out our Quick Guide to Galvanizing and Inspiring Gen X below:
Gen X is family-oriented and focuses on providing. Whether it’s saving for a rainy day or a dream vacation, Gen Xers will get it done through hard work and determination, staying focused on the overall experiences they’re striving to achieve. When you market to this particular trait and show the ways your dealership is able to help them meet their goals by saving, enhancing their experiences, or offering lasting value, you’ll go a long way toward earning this group’s trust.
Gen X is cautious with spending. This generation has lived through recessions and several economic downturns, impressing upon it the importance of wisely spending, as well as saving money. That’s not to say this generation doesn’t buy; on the contrary, Gen X has a lot of purchasing power, and they are buying, however, they tend to do quite a bit of thoughtful research before putting their money behind larger purchases. Dealerships that provide easily-accessible, research options for vehicles—like comparison sites or consumer review sites—will do well when it comes to earning Gen X business.
Gen X is at a high-earning, high-spending point of life. Consisting of consumers aged approximately 35 to 50, this generation is full of professionals who are at the peaks of their careers and are ready to invest in quality products. Dealerships that are able to position both their products and services as the highest quality investments will do well with Gen X shoppers. By offering top-of-the-line customer service, vehicle maintenance benefits, and superior quality vehicles, you’ll successfully reach this generation.
Gen X uses a combination of new and traditional research methods. While this generation is very in tune with the digital age and can be found researching and interacting online, you’ll also find they still respond to traditional marketing and promotional efforts. Dealerships that use a combination of tools, such as online interaction via social media, email, web advertisements, as well as phone interaction will reach these shoppers most successfully.
Gen X digs digital video. If you’re left wondering how to reach your Gen X shoppers, it’s time to get into digital video! You may find it surprising, but over 75% of this group of consumers say they download or stream online video at least once per month. Additionally, this is the only generational group that regularly consumes marketing and advertising messages from every key media channel—including social media. It’s worth your dealership’s time and energy to get messages out via a variety of channels to engage this audience. Use variety to your advantage with Gen X!
In short, you may have heard people talk about Generation X as the “lost generation” or the “middle child,” but nothing’s further from the truth when it comes to the impact this generation has on the U.S. economy. This generation is full of powerful shoppers, buyers, and consumers, and when businesses align themselves with Gen X and show they share their ideals, values, and goals, they’ll earn fans who will turn to them for their vehicle needs. Get to know your consumers while marketing cars—and you’ll turn your dealership into a preferred destination for shoppers who want to truly connect with the businesses where they spend their hard-earned dollars.