Generation Ageless: How Baby Boomers Are Changing the Way We Live Today… And They're Just Getting Started

  • 4h 35m
  • Ann Clurman, J. Walker Smith
  • HarperCollins
  • 2007

Think Baby Boomers are all alike? Think again. This dynamic generation is nearing the traditional age of retirement, but is in no mood to slow down. Learn how to market, sell to, do business with, or just understand this remarkable generation, from Yankelovich, Inc., the organization that knows them better than anyone else.

Yankelovich actually coined the term "Baby Boomer" back in the late 1960s, when they first started collecting data on this influential generation. Now, more than thirty years later, they have the most complete information on Boomers ever assembled. And they have put it all together in this groundbreaking look at America's largest and most powerful generation.

In Generation Ageless, Yankelovich president J. Walker Smith, Ph.D., and senior partner Ann Clurman, Boomers themselves, dig deep into what makes this generation tick. With fresh, original data and a wide-ranging look at everything about Boomers, they dissect Boomers into six major segments—Straight Arrows, Due Diligents, Maximizers, Sideliners, Diss/Contenteds, and Re-Activists—to provide new insights into the world's most talked-about generation. The results show key imperatives invaluable to anyone selling a product, service, or idea to this 78-million strong group.

Boomers are the dominant generation in America. Their values and aspirations set the tone for everyone. Advances in medicine and health mean that this youth-obsessed generation is now focused on an everlasting prime of life. They are literally middle age–less: holding onto their position at the top of the pyramid for as long as possible, and not fading away to their golden years. Today's fifty- and sixty-year-old Boomers are not eagerly anticipating lives of disengaged retirement. Instead, middle age–less Boomers expect another twenty or thirty years of impact and influence—albeit in a variety of ways reflective of a surfeit of agendas and ambitions they have yet to fulfill.

About the Authors

J. Walker Smith, Ph.D., is president of Yankelovich, Inc. He is co-author of Rocking the Ages: The Yankelovich Report on Generational Marketing (New York: HarperBusiness, 1997), a highly regarded assessment of generational marketing strategies; Life Is Not Work, Work Is Not Life: Simple Reminders for Finding Balance in a 24/7 World (Berkeley, Calif.: Wildcat Canyon Press, 2001), a collection of short essays and personal reflections on work/life balance picked by the Wall Street Journal as one of the ten best work-life books of 2001; and Coming to Concurrence: Addressable Attitudes and the New Model for Marketing Productivity (Chicago: Racom Communications, 2005). Described by Fortune magazine as “one of America’s leading analysts on consumer trends,” Walker is a much sought-after speaker and authority on social trends in America whose quotable insights appear regularly in the national media and business press. He does a weekly commentary called “City Views” for Smart City, a public radio show about cities and community life, as well as regular columns in Restaurants & Institutions, Marketing Management, and Media magazines. Walker’s insights have been prominently featured and profiled in many publications, including American Demographics, which had a cover story about him in May 1998.

Prior to Yankelovich, Walker was director of research for DowBrands, Inc. He was a summer lecturer at the annual School of Marketing Research at the University of Notre Dame for fourteen years and is a past vice president of the marketing research division of the American Marketing Association. Walker is a director of Premiere Global Services, a member of the Board of Advisors for the School of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and a director of the American Marketing Association Foundation. He holds three degrees from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, including a doctorate in Mass Communication. He was the commencement speaker for the U.N.C.–Chapel Hill 2005 Graduate School Doctoral Hooding Ceremony. Walker and his wife, Joy, live in Atlanta, Georgia.

Ann Clurman is senior partner at Yankelovich, Inc. Her primary responsibilities are focused on the Yankelovich MONITOR®, the firm’s unparalleled study of consumer attitudes that forecasts lifestyles and behaviors. She has in-depth experience translating MONITOR research into growth opportunities for a wide range of client industries, including personal care, health, retail, telecommunications, advertising, and media. Described by U.S. News and World Report magazine as “one of the best researchers and generation-watchers,” Ann is a nationally recognized authority and lecturer on American consumers. A knowledgeable and spirited speaker, she speaks before diverse client, industry, and government groups and is often quoted in the media. She is the co-author of two acclaimed and groundbreaking books, Rocking the Ages, The Yankelovich Report on Generational Marketing (New York: HarperBusiness, 1997) and Coming to Concurrence: Addressable Attitudes and the New Model for Marketing Productivity (Chicago: Racom Communications, 2005).

Ann holds a bachelor’s degree with Phi Beta Kappa honors from New York University and a master’s degree from Brown University. She resides in New York City.

In this Book

  • Generation Ageless—How Baby Boomers Are Changing the Way We Live Today… And They’re Just Getting Started
  • Introduction: Going the Distance
  • Ka-Boom!
  • Not Getting Old
  • Working on Mattering
  • A Life of Self-Invention
  • Marketing Immortality
  • Having a Purpose
  • A Healthy Attitude
  • Reconnecting
  • Agendas for the Future
  • Breaking Every Rule
  • Appendix: Selected Study Data in Total and by Segments
  • Notes