Why Lands' End is Paying Attention to Gen X Consumers
Lands’ End’s chief customer officer, Sarah Rasmusen, thinks a lot of brands are forgetting about her generation.
At the CommerceNext IRL conference last month in New York City, Rasmusen made the argument for why companies should be paying greater attention to the customer segment known as Generation X, defined by the Pew Research Center as those born between 1965 and 1980, who are between 41 and 56 in 2021.
This consumer demographic has several monikers, including “Baby Busters,” “Slacker Generation,” “Latchkey Kids,” and the “MTV Generation,” to name a few. Rasmusen, who fits squarely within this generation, said Gen Xers are the core of Lands’ End’s customer base.
Who Are Lands’ End’s Gen X Customers?
Rasmusen said the majority of Lands' End's customers are at least 55 years old, 80 percent female, working full time, married and with kids still at home. They’re college educated, love family, travel, pets, cooking, and are “active-ish.”
They love social media — Youtube is their favorite platform, followed by Facebook and Pinterest — and are on their phone at least three hours a day.
And they’re very loyal to Lands’ End.
'Let’s Get Comfy'
Rasmusen pointed out the ironic timing of Lands’ End’s new slogan — “Let’s Get Comfy” — in January 2020, right before a pandemic forced everyone to isolate inside and, well, get comfy.
For Lands’ End, that meant Gen X customers were buying up all of the brand's comfort-oriented products, including home furnishings, knitwear, knit tops, and knit bottoms, to name a few.
“We need to service what she wants,” Rasmusen said. “We’re here to make her life more comfortable.”
Don’t Market to Generations
All of that being said, it’s not strategically efficient to market to a specific generation like Gen Xers or millennials, Rasmusen advised. Rather, retailers should market to behaviors and identify to which generational cohort those behaviors belong.
“It’s the high-value behaviors we target, not some big, broad, spray-and-pray method,” she said.
Related story: Gen Z: What Retailers Can Learn From TikTok