6 Surprising Statistics That Will Help You Market to Generation X

Gen X has a ton of purchasing power online. But learning to market to them can be tricky. Here's how you can gain and retain more Gen X customers.


Marketing to each generation can be tricky, and Generation X is no exception.

How do you reach this seemingly forgotten generation and turn them into loyal customers? It’s all about your marketing strategy.

Let’s talk about how Generation X shops, uses the Internet, gets their news and more so that you can understand the best way to market to them.

What You Should Know About Generation X

Generation X consists of people born from around 1965-1980, making this generation the smallest, composed of fewer people than Millennials or Baby Boomers.

Even though they are a small generation, there are still over 65 million Generation X-ers

They have a ton of purchasing power, accounting for 31 percent of the total U.S. income, and their income (on average) is higher than the national average as well as the averages for all other generations.

Generation X Characteristics and Statistics

Each generation has defining characteristics that teach us how they research and choose businesses. We can use these characteristics to teach us about marketing to each generation and which channels to use to reach them.

These are the facts you need to know about Generation X:

72 Percent of Generation X Uses the Internet to Research Businesses

Despite their preference for traditional TV and newspapers, Generation X-ers tend to still research businesses on the Internet.

So, even if you are running TV commercials, radio ads or even newspaper ads, you will want to make sure your online presence is spotless.

If you have a great TV commercial, but your business looks bad online, with incorrect information or bad reviews, Generation X consumers will see that and turn to a competitor.

Gen X marketing tip: Make sure your business looks good across the most popular websites and directories.

Wondering where to start? Here are common places Generation X can find your business:

  • Your listing on Google, Bing or Yelp
  • Your website
  • Popular online directories

Here are a few steps to get started cleaning up your online presence:

Generation X Is Active on Social Media

  • 95 percent use Facebook
  • 35 percent use LinkedIn
  • 25 percent post regularly on Twitter

Since such a high percentage of Generation X-ers use Facebook, this is the social media platform to use to market to them. If your target market consists of members of Generation X, make sure to tailor your posts to them, and don’t forget to target this age group when creating Facebook ads.

We've added a CTA button to our Facebook Page, allowing people to watch our brand video.

Gen X social media marketing tips:

  • Add a description to your Facebook Page’s About section
  • Make sure your address, website, phone number and hours are correct
  • Add a call-to-action to your Facebook Page (see "Watch Video" in the above screenshot)
  • Add locations if necessary
  • Manage your Facebook Reviews
  • Post regularly (at least weekly)
  • Get more followers and improve engagement to show that your business is worth the follow or the purchase
  • Try Facebook advertising

Generation X Has the Highest Brand Loyalty Across All Generations

Companies have reported that Gen X-ers are loyal to the brands they love, so as long as you can get them in the door and give them a good experience, they should remain loyal.

Returning customers are responsible for generating 41 percent of store revenue, so make sure to do what you can to keep your Generation X customers loyal.

Gen X loyalty tip: Make sure to reward this loyalty in some way, whether it’s a discount after a certain amount of purchases or with a simple thank you email.

And remember to provide excellent service. It probably seems like a no-brainer, but if you treat your repeat customers well, try to remember their names and give them a great experience, not only will they want to return to your business but they are also likely to spend more.

Repeat customers tend to spend more on purchases on average, and 68 percent of people are willing to spend more on businesses with good service.

So, make sure to give your customers a good experience so that they return to your business.

On Average, Generation X-ers Spend 3 Hours on Mobile Daily

Whether they’re using their smartphones to check Facebook, research a business, read the news or watch YouTube videos, Generation X spends a lot of time on mobile each day. 

Mobile marketing for Generation X tip: When targeting Generation X (or any generation, really) make sure your website is optimized for mobile.

Check out your site on mobile and look for these mobile-usage factors:

  • Make sure your site loads quickly on mobile. Otherwise, people will get impatient and leave.
  • Make sure links and buttons are spaced apart so that people don’t accidentally hit them.
  • Make sure text is easy to read on mobile.
  • Make sure the page fits the screen.
  • Have someone on a different device (tablet or a different phone size) view the site and look for the same factors.

Generation X Consumers Are Nostalgic

Google conducted a YouTube survey to find out what Generation X likes to watch most. As it turns out, the common theme was nostalgia. Gen X-ers want to watch videos related to the past:

  • Past events
  • People from the past
  • Old TV commercials
  • Music from the past

Nostalgia marketing tip: Add a little nostalgia to your marketing. Whether it’s by mentioning a throwback or creating a video in the style of their favorite TV shows or commercials from the past, give them something that stirs the nostalgia within your Generation X customers.

Nostalgia reminds them of a time when they were younger and more carefree, so adding it to your marketing will make them feel that rather than being advertised to, you have put thought into them as an audience.

54% of Generation X Consumers Feel Overlooked by Brands and Marketers

Everyone wants to know how to market to Millennials or Generation Z, but that can mean that we ignore Generation X.

Maybe it’s because they’re a smaller generation, or maybe it has something to do with the fact that the younger generations appear to be more tech-savvy.

No matter the reason, you can’t afford to ignore Generation X. They have a ton of purchasing power and they are brand loyalists.

Gen X marketing tip: Make sure when you are marketing to Generation X that you create messages tailored to their goals, likes and place in life.

Let them know that you are talking to them specifically. And, don’t forget to use nostalgia to bring them back to a simpler time or at least make them laugh and forget that you are advertising to them.

There you have it. Use these tips to market to your Generation X consumers and you will gain loyal customers who return to your business time and time again.

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