When it is time to do a little redecorating, whom should
you accommodate? Will it be the Gen X-ers, the Baby Boomers or families? These
kinds of questions need to be answered before you spend your hard earned
dollar. Here are three reasons you should think about those Baby Boomers first.
The Recession Didn’t
It may seem like a cold calculation, but that is the kind
you need if you plan to stay in business. While some of the Baby Boomers didn’t get their money out of the stock market early enough;
most did. Furthermore, those that were hit when we went into a recession have
bounced back fairly well.
What does that mean to you? They still have money to spend.
Best of all, research in the industry indicates that they are ready to spend
that money and are dining out at ever-increasing rates.
They Are Experimenting with Cuisine
While the Baby Boomer set may be hitting their senior
years, they don’t see themselves as old or set in their ways. They are
eager to try new foods and new tastes, and their budgets allow them to go out
on a culinary limb. In many ways, the Boomer generation has moved away from the
“traditional” fare of its youth. They may have grown up on fast food, and
considered a steak dinner the height of fine dining a decade ago, but today
they want smaller portions, better ingredients and new flavors.
They Are a Huge Section of the Pie
When you look at who is spending the most on dining out you
would be delighted to discover that Baby Boomers account for nearly half of the
total. That’s a huge number of people, and their percentage is going
up. It would be foolish not to pursue such a demographic.
How to Make Your Restaurant Boomer Friendly
So, what do Boomers look for when they go out to dine?
Comfort, fun and light are at the top of the list. Start by providing more
light so that boomers can read the menu easily and see their food clearly. Turn
down the volume so they can hear each other chat. Get bigger, softer chairs
that make sitting through the meal a pleasure.
Changes you should consider in the kitchen would include
more heart-healthy options and smaller portions. Seniors don’t eat as much as younger folks and they don’t want to waste food either. Fresh ingredients are another
pull for many health conscious boomers. Also, add some combo meals so they can
try a bit of several things. Make sure you offer indulgences such as exquisite
desserts or high end side dishes.
Finally, woo them with frequent-diner programs to reward
their loyalty and invite them to “member only” functions
if possible. Give them a deal that is specific to their age group too.
Making your restaurant boomer friendly doesn’t take too much effort or expense, and it will more than
pay off in your bottom line.