Beware the ‘One False Note’ when Marketing to Boomer Women

When marketing to Boomer women, brands need to be authentic and realistically portray the Boomer woman’s perspective.

This generation is very sensitive to what I call “the one false note” syndrome. She will ferret out the fake, the phony and the contrived in any marketing communication.

For example, I once saw a print ad for a car in which a couple was driving down the road, and the wife was pointing a camera out of the car window. The headline was, “Bill cleverly convinced Mary that sightseeing was best done on the fly.” Well, every woman knows that the point of the story is that Bill just didn’t want to stop. In the Boomer woman’s mind, Bill “told” Mary rings true, while “convinced” does not. No way.

Beware the ‘One False Note’ when Marketing to Boomer Women

Boomer women can detect even more subtle false notes than an unrealistic advertising headline. Marketing professionals also must pay attention to their photographs and imagery. Consider the stock photo to the right, purportedly of a happy Boomer woman on her birthday. But just glancing at the photo, Boomer women detect what the model is really thinking, “Ugh. I can’t believe I have to act so ridiculously happy about another birthday. And in this Hawaiian-print shirt, no less!”

The one false note syndrome is about making sure the ad or marketing message reflects the way a woman sees the situation, not the way a man does. I work with many companies and brands, in a variety of industries, helping them identify and weed these “false notes” out of their marketing communications.

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