In advertising we’re all too often caught up in promoting the hyped products to the perceived audiences with value. It’s that focus on the 18-35 age group, where the cool stuff is. The sexy stuff. But, sadly, enough in this economy that’s a generation under-employed, bereft of cash and sadly moving back in with their parents. They can’t afford those sexy products and it’s their parents who are the Baby Boomers, they have all the money.
Terry Clark, United Health Group’s (UHG) chief marketing office, spoke to a full crowd at the Advertising Federation of Minnesota’s morning program on October 18th about this audience. He provided stunning statistics about how critical this topic is for marketers now and in the coming years 10,000 people every day are turning 65 in the United States. Soon there will be more people over the age of 65 than there collectively ever has been in human history.
“The world, governments, everyone is unprepared for this. No one really knows how to react to this or what to expect,” he said.
The impact of this generational shift is huge and will affect government programs and the housing markets. An enormous amount of disposable income is now in the hands of a very powerful demographic that is often misunderstood.
UHG’s insight data into this audience is very different from what the perceptions are. They aren’t old, or at least they don’t consider themselves old. They are vital, and ready for the best part of their lives. They have interests and passions. They aren’t waiting around to die. In speaking to these audiences they’ve found that the Baby Boomers are surprisingly technically savvy, and budding social media bugs.
Speaking to them in their own words it’s what good marketers are doing. Companies like Apple, AmeriPrise and others. UHG’s own “Health in Numbers” and “Go Long” campaigns are molded in this belief.
As people age, they enter a new life. Not an old life. This represents a historic opportunity for marketers to speak to them in a whole new way.
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