The American society has experienced a series of generation changes for a long period of time. However, the most significant change of event is the current baby boomers which represent a huge number of the American population that is on its transition to retirement. With a baby boom experienced between 1946 and 1964, the American census estimated that nearly 79 million children were born during this time (Jalwosky 2010). As a significant percentage of the population, this group has managed to come out with unique qualities, attributes, need and attitude which have shaped their lifestyle as well as affecting every sphere of the life. With a retirement package being given to baby boomer, this section of the population has defined itself as differently from the rest of the population.
The term baby boomers has been in use for a long time in reference to the section of the population that was born between 1946 and 1964. The birth of this category of people took place just after the Second World War. Wister (2005) points out that during this age, the births cohorts that were experienced were much higher than the previous years. Presently, most of the baby boomers are about to retire from the American workforce having reached their required age of retirement. However, despite their age, it is vital to note that this group of people was born during a time of prosperity. It is argued that the baby boomers resulted due to the convergence of two issue which are identified as the high number of marriages after the world war and parents having “children closer together” (Wister 2010, p.4 )
At the moment, baby boomers form part of the current American workforce though many of them are nearing their retirement where they will be paid sums of money that will in no doubt influence our economy and their purchasing power. Looking at the lifestyles of the baby boomers, it is more likely that retirement shall be revolutionized with baby boomers having a substantial amount of disposable income.
There are a number of events that transpired in American history and consequently influence the world view of baby boomers. Some of these events included the world war which had just been concluded before the birth of baby boomers. The economic prosperity experience in this period in no doubt influenced their view of life with many departing from the conservative attitude that their parent held prior to 1946. The growing number of protest against wars such as Protests on Vietnam War shaped the baby boomers in the political realm. The sexual revolution and civil right movement that was experienced also influence their culture (Lantos 2010).
The baby boomers have emerged to have unique taste for a variety of products and services which has shaped the way in which business deliver such products and services to them. For instance, female baby boomers have demonstrated that they have a strong desire to dress youthfully yet not like their daughter or mother (Petrecca & O’Donnell 2008). Women baby boomers have continued to ask for clothes that make them look youthful by choosing clothing that perfectly blend with the tradition and style thus setting them apart from the youth and the elderly. Men likewise want clothes that do not portray them as old but young enough to enjoy the retirement with passion rather than been regarded as old folks.
With a large cohort of baby boomers expecting to retire, it is much more apparent that baby boomers will be in need of goods or services that deliver comfort, ease of use but at the same time safeguard their traditions and culture. At the same time, it is evident that many of the baby boomers want products that enhance their bodies. For this case, cosmetics and other body enhancement products will be required. However, it is more likely that baby boomers will be in need of health and entertainment products that help combat aging as well as improving their health and provide leisure to them (Wuthnow 2007 ). From the income earned from upon retirement, there is a high likelihood of the baby boomers to spend their money in areas where their needs will be attended to while making them retain their social status, health and physique.
Baby boomers and market shift
From the shift of tastes and market demands created by baby boomers, many business establishments have tailor made their products and solutions in order to exploit the income from baby boomers. In the clothing industry, many designer companies have changed their delivery of products especially those that target baby boomers. Denim jeans designers have intensified their target for baby boomers by developing innovative jeans for them (Jones 2010). Henry-Lee & Co. and Ava design believe that time has come for them to exploit the clothing needs of the baby boomers who are increasing their demand for nice looking clothes due to their economic might.
Other areas of the economy have not been left behind either. Home builders have changed their housing solutions to reflect the new change in leisure and programming patterns. Pulte homes for instance have recognized the need to build home for baby boomers with entertainment in mind. In this case, the company seeks to satisfy the entertainment needs that have shifted to those who might require “5-9, both a.m. and p.m.,” for their activities (Olick, 2010, Para. 2).
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The baby boomers have been influenced by different factors that have shaped their needs and wants which are reflected in the kind of products that they are looking for. With the demand of product that keep baby boomers fit, presentable and healthier, many companies have emerged with innovative products to address the shift in taste and demand in order to fully benefit from the income of the baby boomers who represent a significant market niche.