American Baby Boomers

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Rajashree Gopinath25/02/2013
Principles of marketing
Prof John O’Malley

THE AMERICAN BABY BOOMER

More babies were born in 1946 than ever before in the United States of America. Statistics indicate that 3.4 million people were born, which is 20 percent more than in 1945. This was the beginning of the so-called “baby boom.” In 1947, another 3.8 million babies were born and more than 4 million were born every year from 1954 until 1964. By then, there were 76.4 million “baby boomers” in the United States. They made up almost 40 percent of the nation’s population. So by definition baby boomers are the large number of people born worldwide between 1946 and 1964.

History

The Great depression and the World War II had just ended. This was the time when two of the most dreadful events of the world took its break. People who had postponed marriage during the Great depression and World War II had begun to consider starting a family. According to statistics between 1940- 1945, only 8% of women opted out of having babies. They started doing so because they began to think that the future holds comfort and prosperity. In a way they were rite. The then “American dream” was met by the passing of the GI bill on June 1944. Due to this, loans for homes and farms were made available to GIs at low interest rates, and low or no down payment was provided, which meant that it was cheaper to buy houses in suburban areas than to rent an apartment in the city. Hence people began to buy lands in the outskirts of cities and due to that the suburban population grew. By 1960, suburban baby boomers and their parents comprised one-third of the population of the United States. In addition, the GI Bill made higher education a reachable goal with low-interest loans. This was the time when women started attending college. With the backing of the GI bill people got married and started families, went back to school and bought their first homes. The dramatic increase in births during the Baby Boom helped the economy to lead to an exponential rise in the demand for consumer products, fashionable clothes, universities, hospitals, credit facility fast food joints, suburban homes, automobiles, roads etc. With the increase in the economic backdrop people raised families in the thought that they could not only support them emotionally but now materialistically also. So they did not worry about giving birth to more babies, and hence arose the generation of baby boomers. Clothing preference of baby boomers– women in particular

Baby boomers were not left behind with the fashion trends, as some of them are even trendsetters. They were responsible to the reopening of the Paris fashion houses and many luxurious names such as Christian Dior and Cristóbal Balenciaga became leaders in fashion due to them. The era of baby boomers made bell-bottom jeans, high boots, tie-dyed shirts, hot pants, granny dresses, jeans for every occasion and sneakers a fashionable statement. People preferred polyester and synthetic over cotton wear. Sports wear came into demand. More importantly skirts and sweaters became a virtual uniform for the American children. According to the US census bureau, the oldest baby boomer turned 60 in 2006. So this means that their demand in fashion is not the same as it was in 1950’s -1970’s. Women are trying to slow down the aging process by dressing in style yet with attitude. The recession has caused a demand for women in double/triple duty wears; clothes than can be used for more than one occasion. Better fabrics with better cuts give better-fitted clothes. And that’s what brands such as Chico and Bloomindale’s have designed. They include well-fitted pants, wrinkle free jackets and pencil skirts. Women prefer cardigans the most, as they can layer it with a white tank top underneath it and wear it through spring and winter. Things like scarves, necklaces and bracelets add trends to women's current wardrobes. They give...
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