Selling gardening to Generation Y (aka the Millenials).

Coming soon … The Millenials. No, not some new indie rock band. I am talking about the children of the Baby Boomers. People born between 1977 and 2000, also known as Generation Y. In terms of numbers, they are the next big thing in demographics. Their collective purchasing power will influence the way whole industries are organized as they adapt to satisfy their needs. The Lawn & Gardening industry is not immune from this demographic shift. Retailers are already changing their sales & marketing activities to cater to this emerging market.

The following are excerpts from articles that offer opinions on how to sell gardening to Generation Y.

Trouble is, they’re burdened with educational loan debt and unlikely to stake a claim of suburban turf anytime soon. So garden centers, growers and breeders need to develop a tiered approach to help them first grow things on front stoops and balconies and then decks and yards. Plus, the industry should help them enjoy the “journey” of gardening rather than just selling them something.

Michael Leach – Trendspotting: Millennial Gardeners

So what can be done to attract more Millennials to spark their green thumbs? Tell them how they are not only benefitting from the product, but how they are contributing to the greater good by using it. Personalize the product by using an alternative plant tag made from different kinds of recycled materials. Our generation is more connected to the world than our ancestors—using the Internet and social media for tips, advice, ideas, and new products is an effective way of reaching us.

Caitlin Ash – Gen Y and Gardening: Gardening with a Purpose

Offer products that fit their lifestyles. If they live in small apartments or condos, come up with products that fit that those spaces — front door stoops or balconies.

Offer an array of products for personalization. People buy differences, not similarities.

Show you’re of the same mindset. Engage in community initiatives and adopt their sense of community. Take part in their initiatives and projects.

Sara Tambascio – Turning The Millennial Generation Into Gardeners

Growing your own food is cool!
Gardening is a way to connect with people.
It is hard to screw up a garden, and it is easy to fix.
Appeal to their sense of competition — do you have the best garden in the neighborhood?
Gardening can add value to your home, which is your most important investment.
And, get this, you are SAVING THE PLANET.

Susan Reimer – Gardening with Gen Y..or not?

If you want to sell to Gen X and Y, I’ll tell you how: Don’t dumb it down, keep it modern and minimalist, and quit trying to sell us chemicals, even organic ones. We’ll pop $200 worth of succulents on our credit cards to make that vertical garden, but we wouldn’t take your Miracle-ick and flowered trowels home if they were free. The appeal of gardening is that it’s real and dirty and interesting, so anyone trying to sell us someone else’s dream about how it’s pristine, bug-free and takes no investment of energy beyond “Dig, Drop and Done” is completely missing the point.

Genevieve  Schmidt – Gen X and Y Gardeners – Can We Quit Worrying About This, Please?

We’ve also got to work on selling the process and not “stuff.” If we just keep selling things such as containers, plants, tools, potting soil, whirligigs and so on, we’re just selling stuff. If we sell gardening, an expression of earthy joy full of satisfaction and rewards, we’re winning two-fold with return clients and cha-chings at the cash register.

Gardeners, especially those my age, not only need basic information and “stuff,” but also a reason to care, an affirmation of the beliefs they have towards gardening.

Kelly D. Norris – GEN Y Gardening’s Tipping Point

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