Why do Most Businesses Fail in the Era of Gen X?

As a business entrepreneur, it’s challenging to get customers. We often get their attention through various marketing strategies like content marketing, word-to-word marketing, etc. But it’s even tough when you have to reach the Gen x category people who are people at the 50 plus age group, and not familiar with modern strategies. They also tend to react less to a Facebook ad than the 20’s age group. 

Most companies make a mistake by neglecting Gen X category people. They do not target entire demographics. So they fail to get high profitability, and the conversion rate goes down. 

Here are some reasons businesses fail in the era of Gen X:

1. Fewer strategies, more expectation 

In Gen x time, people were not aware of business plans and marketing strategies to grow their business. Word-to-word marketing was only a technique for their business improvement. But these strategies will not last long until you have a strong networking group.

Most often, ads used to play in radio and newspapers, but only a handful of people would explore the product and services businesses provided. Most people in that era always believed in customer reviews and proceeded with purchasing only when they saw a high number of satisfied customers. 

Market research was rarely conducted in Gen X times. Entrepreneurs seldom conduct Porter’s Five Forces as a market research technique. This market research model is highly beneficial to give an accurate report of competitive forces that shape an industry. 

2. Personalize learning and development 

The most chosen learning mode for that generation of leaders is personalized activities, selected depending on their role and development goals. It is essential to check what works for every single development. 

Marketing experts often make the mistake of not understanding the Gen X generation even though they form a major part of the demographic. And if you want to tap into this space then maybe it is time to change the strategy a bit. 

Leadership is a major part of this process. A smart way to catch up with the modern leadership tactics is to read relevant leadership blogs on the same. 

3. Lack of resources to reach customers. 

At present, you have many ways to collect information from people through social media platforms. You can get enough data like Name, Occupation, interests, most liked pages, and you will have clear information on how much activity they are performing on social media platforms. 

Through this information, you can easily create content and reach them. Prior to this, companies were doing surveys to collect information. They used to go to every home and take details of people and their interests. It’s time-consuming and requires a lot of work. Because they failed to produce customers’ requirements and needs, they were not able to reach their goals. 

4. They think about security. 

Most Gen X people that have families and children are focused on building their lives. A handful of them were ready to risk their future by prioritizing family safety and financial prospects. They firmly believed it is essential to safeguard them. 

They always held strong family values. To connect with them was a highly challenging task because gaining their trust was only possible by making them a priority and then getting trusted. Delivering a reliable product or service was the primary strategy to build relationships and referrals. 

5. Poor Management team 

The most common issue found in the Gen x era is a weak management team. A weak management team often make mistakes in an area like: 

  • They often have a weak strategy, building a product that no one likes to purchase. They fail to put enough hard work to prove their ideas before and during the development. This can also happen through poor marketing strategies. 
  • They are generally poor at execution, creating lots of issues with product/services not getting appropriately developed on time.

6. Lack of research 

Present-generation entrepreneurs conduct market research and use many research methods to know customers’ requirements and understand whether the business gets them to profit. Prior to this, there were no modern techniques to know customers’ needs and the necessity to start a business without thinking about whether customers look for the service/product they sell. 

Digital marketing techniques are a more modern way to connect with your target customers. And Gen X is surely active in this space and hence switching to digital marketing is a good way to tap into this demographic. 

Gen X used to research business only by getting data from a TV commercial, newspaper ad. They never knew that company details and responding to customers consistently are essential. Keeping customers active on social platforms and, most importantly, on your website. 

Also, errors in the SWOT analysis can create a problem and cause business failure. 

Some of the common mistakes in SWOT analysis you should ignore are:

  • Research is a scientific process; personal opinion should not be counted here. The same norms apply for SWOT analysis as well. Most people make the mistake of taking a first or second person opinion. You should always stick to the scientific data you come across. 
  • The data gathered from market research is generally in the raw form. These data would make no sense to the user until they are arranged in a logical order. The source you choose this data from as well plays an important role. Ensure that you examine the credibility of the marketing report/survey before borrowing from it. Often the company has wasted interests in study and may deform data according to their convenience. 
  • The most commonly found error is that factors are placed in the wrong way. Strengths, Weakness, Opportunities, Threats are categorized in the wrong way. The data you receive will not be adequately arranged, so you need to place them in vertical tabular form. 


I hope the above information is helpful. In Gen x time, lack of research, Zero technical knowledge was a drawback for its failure. But at present, we have enough resources to establish a new business and achieve our goals. 

Author Bio: Mary Jones is the co-founder and editor-in-chief at TopMyGrades, which focuses on career counselling for university students in the US, Canada, UK and Australia. Mary helps students with their marketing reports and assignments. She has extensive content editing experience and has worked with MSNBC, NewsCred and Scripted in the past. She has also authored blogs on Lifehack.org, Wn.com, Medium.com, Minds.com and many more digital publications.