The smallest population of generations with approximately 65 million, Generation X has been called America’s neglected ‘middle child’ sandwiched by the Baby Boomers and Millennials. While this group is only about 75% the size of either of the other two, it has a very unique mindset. As kids, they grew up street-smart but isolated, often with divorced or career-driven parents, giving them the nickname Latchkey Kids. Because of this isolation, Generation X is cynical of many major institutions, which failed their parents, or them, during their formative years and are therefore eager to make marriage work and “be there” for their children. So how does that apply to the retail world? Their desire to provide for their families is overwhelming. Position your products as ways to bring the family together or heirlooms that can be handed down to their kids to help you resonate with Generation X.
From everything we know about them, Generation X does not give much of a hoot what others think of them, and yet they do care about labels and brand names, giving soft good retailers an opportunity. When out shopping, they are compelled by up-sells and skillful store displays. Loyalty programs are another great way to attract this demographic. Dailybreak Media found that Gen X shoppers were the most frequent purchasers once they had joined a loyalty program. Sixty-five percent bought items at least once a month from the stores for which they had loyalty cards.
Finally, don’t overlook the craziness of their lives today. This group ranges from late 30’s to mid 50’s so they are balancing a bustling career with soccer practice and band rehearsals. When they make time to shop, they seek an escape. Provide a getaway through calm music, coffee and a space to sit to keep them coming back into your store.