Advertisers give millennials all the love, but it's boomers who deserve a closer look

When we talk about social media advertising, our advice is clear: Listen to the data. Still, because many advertisers don’t understand how each platform works, they make a lot of mistakes in planning their campaigns.

Take YouTube as an example. The platform reaches 81% of all Americans on the internet, with younger folks making up the majority. But what may surprise many is that baby boomers are actually more likely to watch your ads. That’s right, this older generation registers view rates 10% higher than millennials (compare 31.2% for boomers to 28.3% for millennials).

YouTube generations

In our latest data report, “YouTube’s Generational Divide,” we examined a year’s worth of YouTube campaigns across 25 industries in the U.S. to understand how each generation engages with YouTube ads. Here's what we found.


Baby boomers watch and spend more

First, despite having higher engagement rates, boomers are not being targeted on YouTube as often as their younger peers. Instead, advertisers allocate disproportionately more budget to millennials (156% more) and Gen Xers (137% more).

But it’s not just that this older audience engages more with YouTube ads — it’s that boomers spend more too. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, boomers account for 48% of consumer expenses each year, which means that if you target them, you can expect a higher ROI.


Baby boomers watch ads everywhere

YouTube device per generation

Another thing our report debunks: the notion that older generations reject new technology. To the contrary, we found that boomers registered higher view rates across all devices (desktop, mobile and tablet) compared to both millennials and Gen Xers.

The possibilities to reach boomers on YouTube are limitless. They watch more ads than anyone else on every device and have greater purchasing power to pursue their interests.


So how can you reach baby boomers on YouTube?

Now that you know this older generation is ripe for the picking, you need an action plan. The right strategy considers what sort of brands perform best with boomers, targets the devices where they engage the most and selects topics of high interest.

Download our free data report now to:

  • Get insights on the topics that attract every major generation on YouTube, including millennials, Gen Xers and baby boomers.
  • See a list of the 14 industries boomers engage with the most, along with cost-per-view and view rates.
  • Access a step-by-step guide to creating a customized plan to target boomers on YouTube.
Jason Nesbitt

Jason Nesbitt

Jason Nesbitt is VP of Media & Agency Operations at Strike Social, where he oversees a global media-buying division that manages 15,000+ campaigns daily. He holds an MS in Advertising from the University of Illinois.