There are more than 76 million baby boomers in the United States, comprising a significantly large segment of the population. While marketing efforts often focus on those in the 18-34 age range, baby boomers still hold greater spending power – especially when it comes to healthcare. For dental professionals who want to purchase a practice, it’s wise to carefully consider the impact of those over 50 and how they can influence long-term success.
Many are shocked to learn that baby boomers account for more than 50 percent of all discretionary income in the United States. Historically, they’ve been an affluent population, and at this stage in their lives, they are spending more on health and wellness – including dental care. This opens up a wealth of opportunities for practices to increase market share and revenue.
Marketing to Baby Boomers
Like with any generation, baby boomers are unique and respond to certain forms of marketing more than others. The key to marketing to this segment is to understand their wants and needs.
Once called the “me-generation,” baby boomers respond to marketing that is tailored to their specific needs. Thanks to advances in technologies, such as email marketing and variable data printing, marketing content can be individualized in everything from dental posts and newsletters to appointment reminders and promotions. Opportunities for upsells, such as concierge-level care, that cater to their desire for personalized service also can create new revenue streams primarily from baby boomer patients.
Much like their younger millennial counterparts, baby boomers are surprisingly forward-thinking and willing to embrace innovative technology. Most use smartphones and social media sites which open up many marketing possibilities. Thus, digital marketing shouldn’t be something only directed at younger segments. In fact, targeted multichannel marketing to baby boomers can be surprisingly lucrative.
More than perhaps any other generation, baby boomers have a forever-young mindset. As a group, they’re willing and able to invest in dentistry that enables them to look younger longer. This includes dental implants, dentures, bridges, crowns, periodontal care, veneers, whitening, and even orthodontia.
What to Look for in a Practice
Considering the impact of baby boomer patients, it’s wise to carefully consider this group when it comes to choosing a dental practice. As part of a practice’s evaluation, you will want to review the ratio of patient demographics, as well as how baby boomers have been marketed to historically. In many cases, you may discover that there has been little to no targeted outreach to this segment. In other words, a practice with a high number of baby boomers with limited existing marketing efforts may have untapped revenue. And, a practice with many baby boomer patients that also have robust marketing efforts may continue to grow steadily as this segment spends an increasing amount on healthcare.
Henry Schein Professional Practice Transitions, Inc. is a national leader in dental practice transitions. A subsidiary of Henry Schein, Inc. they provide expert guidance for selling and buying dental practices, dental practice fees and management, assessing partnership and associate-ship opportunities, and performing dental practice appraisals and valuations.