31 May 2009

Boomers key to economic recovery

The Chronicle Times:

Boomers key to economic recovery
CTBaby Boomers should be renamed Economic Boomers … they hold the key to America's economic recovery and … the best thing American business could do right now is market to boomers.

Other news pieces floating around make the same points.

Nice to see the press and a handful of business industries catching up.  I talked about it all six months ago:

Baby Boomers & The Economic Collapse
What do you buy? Almost everything.  Clothes, appliances, computers, toothpaste.  The list is endless.  Regular, ol’ stuff.  Stuff almost exclusively marketed to twentysomethings with ad campaigns that don’t resonate with middle-aged consumers.

And in an online presentation posted January 3rd (about 17 minutes in):

2008 Review: A PowerPoint
Not necessarily the biggest stories about advertising and Baby Boomers – but ones that intrigued me, that I believe will be influential.

Another quote from the Chronicle piece:

So, the best thing any business in America could do right now is to learn how to sell to Boomers. It's not just good for business -- it's good for the economy.

From my November blog post:

Lots of folks have been asking me about Baby Boomers, the economic collapse, and how you should now advertise and market to this demographic.

The how hasn’t changed.  Simple answer: Make sure you have the right guts around to trust.

advbbcover And if you’ve been hopping around this blog for the last three and a half years, or read my book first published in early 2005, you’d know that the what likewise hasn’t changed.  Unfortunately, not too many have paid attention.

27 May 2009

Baby Boomers Bolting From Facebook

Not that it matters or anything’s changed – but surprise, surprise: Baby Boomers are decamping that most famous of digital digs.

Inside Facebook
Fewer Users Over 55 Coming Back … the number of active users over 55 actually decreased by over 650,000 … In other words, users over 55 who joined the site earlier this year haven’t been coming back as much in April and May …

Why it happened, why it doesn’t matter to marketers and advertisers:

Is roiling ether the best place for advertising?
The big buzz phrase today is social networking.  Because Boomers are worried about their work-related competencies, all of a sudden they’re diving into Facebook, LinkedIn, are Twittering, etc. to find out about it all and make connections.

Snake Oil In Cyberspace
As far as Boomers being tech/web Luddites - I’ve been dispelling that silly myth for years - in my book and blog (Advertising to Baby Boomers, first published in early 2005).

But monetizing social networking sites … well, they still haven’t been able to do that with the Millennial and Gen Y demos. What makes anybody think you can do it with Boomers?

The Forgotten Market Online

Christina_Binkley Christina Binkley of The Wall Street Journal is all over the paucity of online shopping for 35+ (that’s age, not size) apparel for women:

The Forgotten Market Online: Older Women
New Fashion Sites Target Youth -- Though Most Web Apparel Sales Are to Women Over 35

Dick Stroud blogged it last week:

All of this would be OK if it were not for the facts. 45-54 year olds spend twice as much online as their daughters. Not surprisingly the average age of an online customer at Saks.com … is 42.

Christina and Dick have nailed it – so I’ll simply link to a few bygone babblings:

Chico’s and Younger Women

Marks & Spencer Redux

Demand for older models grows

24 May 2009

The Depend Campaign

moosA pivotal (you’d never forgive me if I used the word watershed) campaign by Kimberly-Clark – and Bob Moos does a wonderful job unpacking it:

Adult underwear no longer being given the silent treatment
dmn The new TV commercials have ordinary boomer men and women engaged in some unscripted banter about the differences between the two sexes, such as whether men or dependspotwomen make better drivers and which sex actually rules the world … The commercials were directed by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Errol Morris and bear a striking resemblance to a short film he created for a recent Oscars telecast in which people talk off the cuff about why they like movies.

Watch the Depend spots.

Bob saw my 4/9 post about the campaign and called me:

em Why couldn’t it have been…?
And looking at the big picture – let’s hope that ad agencies will see these spots and realize they’re missing out not hiring people over fifty to create campaigns for just about any product or service.

So I get a quote or two in the article.  Thanks, Bob!

Related Post: Ads target empty nests, full wallets

19 May 2009

Fast Company Names Joseph Coughlin to Top 100 List

mcp Dr. Joseph F. Coughlin has been awarded a spot on this year’s Fast Company list of Top 100 Most Creative People In Business.  Here’s why:

joecar #87 - Joseph Coughlin: Director, MIT's AgeLab
Coughlin, 47, runs the first multidisciplinary research lab devoted to using smart technology to bolster older folks' quality of life.

In my book (2005) I hint at a few things Dr. Coughlin talks about in the video clip.  An excerpt:


And that’ll be due to pragmatic visionaries like Joe Coughlin and his research team.

Dr. Coughlin and yours truly ‘gigged’ together a few years ago:

MIT AgeLab
jcoughlin As you can imagine, I've 'seen'em all' when it comes to presenters and pundits specializing in age-related issues. Dr. Coughlin's presentation was nothing I'd ever heard or seen before. Mind-boggling technological advances are already here or down the road apiece.

More about MIT AgeLab and Dr. Joe Coughlin:

Bookmarked Brains