Saturday, June 27, 2009

Two new books about doing business with Boomers

There is a steady stream of new books appearing about Boomer XXXX and Boomer YYYY. Here are some details about two that I have recently read – well partially read.

Boomer Selling, by Steve Howard, is all about: “Helping the wealthiest generation in history own your premium products and services.”

Boomer Marketing, by Ian Chaston, is about: “Selling to a recession resistant market.”

Having written a book about the subject matter covered in both of these titles I find it very difficult to give an objective review.

Every author has a different approach to writing a book – every reader has different requirements.

Boomer Marketing is firmly based at the ‘academic’ end of the writing spectrum containing piles of references to other academic papers and using the language and detachment of the academic journals I review for the IDM's Journal. You can download some additional content from the publisher’s web site that will give a feel for the author’s style when discussing segmentation. This book will be ideal for the final year business studies students who contact me and who want a quick fix on stuff about oldies.

Boomer Selling is at the other end spectrum and the sort of book you pick up at an airport – very chatty – very direct – lots of statements like “Boomers won’t postpone gratification” and “Know our emotions and bring yours”. Have a quick listen to the author talking about the book.

It is not the fault of the authors that neither book comes anywhere near to reflecting the new reality, the opportunities and grave dangers caused by the recession. Because of the gestation time of writing and the process of publication it would be unreasonable to expect this to happen. Boomer Marketing makes an effort, but only at a cosmetic level.

If you are interested in the 50-plus market then you could do a lot worst than purchase both books – there are always a few factlets and challenges to conventional thinking that makes such books worthwhile. Dick Stroud

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