As restaurants look for new ways to get customers coming back through the doors, some operators may fine-tune their offerings and marketing to appeal to a prized demographic group: Baby Boomers. While consumers in this group eat at full-service restaurants more than other groups, they also have some unique characteristics. A recent report in Restaurants and Institutions highlighted how operators can target these consumers.
First, here are the dining out characteristics of Baby Boomers:
- Dine out 1–2 times a week: 55%
- Read nutritional information on restaurant Web sites: 63.8%
- Say they are adventurous diners: 37.8%
These consumers also say that they have cut down on dining out at full-service restaurants because of income limitations and are looking for coupons and other deals to help pay for the expense.
The Restaurants and Institutions report indicates that operators can use the following non-price tactics successfully with Baby Boomers:
- Promote entrees with low/reduced-sodium, low calories and low carbs.
- Offer varying portion sizes. Nearly 70% of Baby Boomers like this idea.
- Train servers to describe exact ingredients included in and preparation methods for entrees.
The findings of this report concur with what appears to be an increased interest in food quality by U.S. consumers. Restaurants who understand and cater to this trend both in their food preparation and marketing may see business start to improve.[Source: Leahy, Kate. New American Diner Study, Restaurants & Institutions, 1.1.10]