Baby Boomer Product Marketing

Within the United States today somewhere around 27 percent of the population were born between the years 1946 and 1964. This time span, directly following the end of World War II, was a time when an unprecedented number of births took place, for reasons both cultural and otherwise. These children affectionately became known as the baby boomer generation. Over a quarter of the citizenship of every single U.S. state (barring Utah) are members of this home front “brigade,” and due to the fact that they have grown-up through periods of great opportunities, they are in general a wealthier bunch. The first of these people have now arrived at—or are fast approaching—retirement age, and with that comes the possibility of health decline. Folks in this age bracket have redefined the concept of what it is to grow old.  They look after themselves more, eat better and take preventive medicine. For this reason, product packaging for the baby boom generation is a major issue for them as individuals and also for the pharma industry as a whole, as they recognize the huge market that needs to accommodate expectations. And so, baby boom generation pharma packaging is a big business.

The baby boom generation’s influence is enormous, given the spending power they have; or more to the point, the companies recognize that they have. Convenience and visibility are two key issues to be factored into product developing. Retail pharma design for baby boomers needs to steer clear from sophisticated packaging, and new concepts can be put into practice with the actual product itself, because baby boomers are more inclined to try something new and unfamiliar than say the 18 to 30 bracket (which might come as a surprise). For this generation, 60 is the new 40, so anything that can help them remain in that mindset will be worth a try.  The down side is that because they are living longer—as much as 20 years longer in many cases—they will experience more health issues along the way, and therefore pharma packaging for the baby boom generation becomes more and more crucial. Arthritis makes child-proof caps practically impossible to open, so the ease of opening a bottle of medication might be the number one priority when deciding on a brand. There are certain products available even now that have packaging which enables their tops to be opened by the use of just the thumb with no twisting required. This is the direction the designers should be heading when looking at this thriving marketplace.

Usage itself is another major determining factor for the baby boomers. Far too often, a container has to be shaken to release the capsules or tablets within and sometimes many more of them are emptied from the container than required, resulting in frustration and a very genuine possibility of losing part of a prescribed dosage, which could have further health implications. It also takes up an individual’s valuable time and is generally bad practice. It can almost be taken for granted that there will be no returning customer for this type of packaging if a better alternative can be found.  Another issue to consider about frustration with opening medication is the day-to-day anxiety that can make one’s fragile twilight years more difficult than they need to be, with the added cost of the importance of the medication being taken in regards to mental health or pain. There are controlled access dispensers coming onto the market which straight away provide a solution to this problem and immediately appeal to any baby boom generation pharma packaging needs.

The other genuine difficulty that arises as people reach their more senior years is problems with their vision. This is a major reason why retail pharma package design for baby boomers simply has to be at the forefront when drawing up concepts for packaging to meet demand. What needs to be considered is striking a happy medium between making a product easily identifiable without being in any way patronizing. Using an array of colors can help with profile and recognizable labeling can make them stand out on supermarket shelves. If the industry accepts the challenge, then baby boom generation pharma packaging can be developed along the right lines for both sides to be satisfied. The companies have a target audience worth tens of billions, and the baby boomers themselves can go on acting below their age in public while retaining dignity in private.