Research Among Generation X
25 Jan 2021

Compared to other generations, marketers tend to ignore Generation X. Should companies focus on this cohort? Can this group be a profitable opportunity? What do marketers need to know about this audience? What is the best way to research Generation X?

This article is the second installment in a five-part article series on generational research by Provoke Insights.

Born between 1965 to 1980, the US population of Gen Xers is much smaller than other generations due to lower birth rates. Two historic events caused this slow-down in having children:

  1. During this period, many men were serving their country in the Vietnam War. 
  2. Also, more women were entering the workforce for the first time. 
As a result, Baby Boomers and Millennials are significantly larger generations than the Xers.  

The initial glance at this audience may seem less appealing than other generations due to its smaller size. However, as several brands overlook this generation, it poses an advantage for others. Less competition can mean more opportunity! A great example of this is Charles Schwab. While most of the banking world was eager to reach millennials and Baby Boomers, Charles Schwab made the strategic decision to go after Generation X and found success with them.

Generation X grew up in the 1980s and 1990s. Significant events such as the first woman judge appointed to the Supreme Court, the Challenger exploding, the invention of the personal home computer, the Monica Lewinsky scandal, and the OJ Simpson trial have shaped their perspectives.

Famous Generation Xers include Adam Sandler, Corey Booker, Tiger Woods, Molly Ringwald, Jeff Bezos, Gwen Stefani, and Jennifer Lopez.
Compared to Baby Boomers and Millennials, this group is highly educated and more often money-driven.

However, as many Generation X have school children now, they have been more inclined to stay home during the Pandemic. Many are still working, they have shifted from the corporate world to a Zoom workplace.1

Generation X is a hybrid of Baby Boomers and Millennials; they like to shop in-store and purchase products online.

If you are thinking about targeting this generation, it is key to size the market beforehand. As most brands will only want to reach a specific portion of Generation Xers, you need to make sure the group is sizable enough to warrant the investment. Survey research is a great way to determine “who” in Generation X is interested in your product, and using secondary research, you can estimate the population of that group.

Interested in learning more about the other generations? Check out our article researching Baby Boomers here.

1. https://www.cleveland.com/entertainment/2020/03/forgotten-generation-x-slackers-no-more-showing-boomers-and-millennials-how-to-deal-when-reality-bites.html

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Finally, read some of our past case studies here:

  1. Annual Ad Testing Campaign for OTC Drug Company
  2. Jewelers of America: Mixed Methodology Market Research Study
  3. Brand Strategy Research for a Rental Truck Company

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Research Among Baby Boomers
20 Jan 2021

Back in the early 2000s, companies were highly focused on targeting the Baby Boomers. The cohort was the “it” generation. However, today most companies are focused on Millennials as they are the largest generation. The Baby Boomers were born between 1946 and 1964. While they are no longer the main focus, it would be a clear miss to ignore Baby Boomers as they are the second largest generation and spend $900 billion annually.

This is the first installment in a 5-part article series on generational research by Provoke Insights. 

Why is it important to understand Baby Boomer’s behaviors, wants, and needs? They are brand buyers with money to spend. By capturing the broader patterns of their lives, brands can identify how and where to engage with this audience. 

A common mistake when understanding this segment is that people just compare research results by age. However, it is crucial to understand how this segment grew up, who are their contemporaries, and what are their attitudes and beliefs. The experiences Baby Boomers have had throughout their lives shapes their relationships with a brand.

  • Baby Boomers grew up in the 1960s and 1970’s. Major events such as the Vietnam war, the asssination of JFK, Rowe vs. Wade, and the Civil Rights movement have shaped their individual perspectives. 
  • In the 1960s, the most popular invention was the handheld calculator. In the 1970s, the laser printer was so large that it took up a whole room. Imagine how much changes this generation has seen in terms of technology alone. Baby Boomers definitely know how to adapt to changes in this regard. 
    • They are much more tech savvy than people give them credit for. The audience outspends Millennials on ecommerce sites.1
  • Examples of baby boomers include President Obama, Bill Gates, Spike Lee, Heather Locklear, Ozzy Osbourne, Sonia Sotomayor, and Oprah. 

However, this audience does not act similarly to its predecessor the Mature generation. From Botox to Viagra, this audience has much more of a Peter Pan mentality. A third of Baby Boomers over the age of 65 continue to work after retirement age. Prior to COVID-19, this number was even higher.2 Why are they still working? Some Baby Boomers want to remain active ,and other simply have not saved enough for retirement.

So, is your band thinking about researching this audience? It is crucial to understand what type of experience they need to create a relationship with this audience. Qualitative research brings to life a more realistic portrayal of this group. If you are conducting survey research, remember to ask questions about attitudes, beliefs, behaviors, and media habits to make sure you are gaining full portrait of this audience.

  1. https://www.cbre.us/real-estate-services/real-estate-industries/omnichannel/the-definitive-guide-to-omnichannel-real-estate/consumers/how-does-online-spending-vary-be-generation
  2. https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2020/11/09/the-pace-of-boomer-retirements-has-accelerated-in-the-past-year/
Read our blog series on Generation Alpha:
  1. Understanding your consumer: Generation Alpha
  2. How to Research Generation Alpha?
  3. The Difference Between Generation Alpha and Millennials
  4. Marketing Strategies for Generation Alpha: the Newest Generation

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Valentine’s Day Marketing 2021, Falling in Love With Your Brand
12 Jan 2021

It is a well-known fact that Christmas is the holiday that drives the most retail sales. What most people are not aware of is the second biggest holiday retail day of the year is actually Valentine’s Day. 

Couples, partners, friends, and family go crazy for Valentine’s Day. Whether it is jewelry for a partner or chocolates for your mom, Americans are shopping in February! We have a feeling, Valentine’s Day 2021 will lead to more spending than ever. This hypothesis is three-fold: 

  1. More Quality Time Than Ever. While everyone is still staying home, many people have spent more time with their loved ones in the last 12 months than they have ever spent with them in a year period. In a turbulent year, we have leaned on our nearest and dearest more than ever and it is time to show our appreciation for them. 
  2. No Dinner & Drinks. Secondly, people cannot go out for a fancy meal at a fancy restaurant to celebrate the day of love. So, people will turn to retail goods in lieu. 
  3. Time to Browse. In other years, people were busy with the start of the New Year and many people were just busy all of the time. This year, everyone is stuck at home. We do not have plans between now and February 14th. People have more time to browse online for gifts this year and more time to buy.

Why Do You Need to Get Prepared Early?

We know it is still January, but Valentine’s day is just around the corner. If you are a brand, it is time to start preparing for this big shopping holiday. You only have a few weeks to get prepared for 

How to Prepare? 
eCommerce Ready

As expected, eCommerce is going to skyrocket this V-day, and January is the month you will need to make sure that you have everything in order to accommodate the increased spending and increased logistics (shipping, delivery, etc.) Is your website ready? Are you stocked after the Christmas holiday? 

Gift Guides

Write your own gift guide or find websites that will write gift guides and get your products in the gift guide. Most people are all out of ideas for gifts come February, you need to put your product on a platter for them. 

Invest in Digital Advertising.

Work out the last possible day that people can purchase from your site to safely receive the gift on time, and advertise the final shopping day online for people to receive their items. Instagram and Facebook ads can be very persuasive in this respect. If you are interested in following the marketing trends for this upcoming year, check out our blog what’s to come in 2021 here

Website Analytics

While it may be too late to conduct a full market research project before the big day. You might want to start your rebrand or strategy research now for the next big holiday. In the meantime, you can analyze your website. Look at the traffic from this time last year. Where are your leads coming from? Optimize these sources this year, get even more leads from the same places while trying to increase traffic in other areas. 

If you are interested in branding or advertising research for longer-term changes, reach out to Provoke Insights. This research could be complete by the next big holiday! 

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Residential furniture industry facts & figures: Infographic – Woodworking Network
05 Jan 2021

Provoke Insights’ research has been published to Woodworking Networker’s blog. Included with other research on the industry, the market research from Provoke Insights’ 2020 Trends study was referenced to discuss the relative resilience of the industry in today’s volatile economic environment.



While other research found that online furniture has surged, Provoke Insights reported that furniture buyers still prefer in-person. Specifically, 67% of furniture buyers purchase in-store. As online retail continues to outperform brick and mortar in most industries, furniture is holding strong, although Woodworking Network found that there has been an increase in online spending in household furniture.




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