Mature Market Experts Stat of The Day: What’s Your Life Expectancy?

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Mature Market Experts: more mature market news and stats more often – What’s Your Life Expectancy? – This fun/interesting rollover map from MSNBC provides an interactive map of the USA that shows your life expectancy on a state by state basis. What’s your life expectancy? It also has a really neat “National timeline” that shows major health milestones/events that changed history.

Which reminds me, if you haven’t had a chance yet, please review Tom Peters amazing PowerPoint on the state of American healthcare. It took him ten years to create and has some amazing stats and figures. While I don’t agree with everything Tom says, it will definately give you some stuff to think about this weekend. I hope you have a great two days off!



Mature Market Experts Stat of The Day: Search Engine Usage

google mature market

Mature Market Experts: more mature market news and stats more often – Search Engines – Believe it or not, aside from some vision and site navigation differences, the mature market has pretty much the same internet search habbits as the younger generations. To me this seems pretty obvious, after all, anyone with a brain quickly discovers (or learns from their kids) the easiest way to find things. “Seventy-one percent of 60-somethings and 52% of 70-somethings had used a search engine in the past week, compared with 77% of 18- to 34-year-olds. (Of course, since the survey was conducted online, the respondents were likely to be fairly tech-savvy.)”

Despite the fact that the mature market now is the most important demographic online (they have the most disposible income), I’m constantly amazed at how few companies pay attention to this as they prepare their on-line marketing.

Stat source: Advertising Age

Mature Market Experts Gem of The Day: Marketing to Baby Boomers and the Mature Market – Avoiding the Herd Mentality

j02622761 TR Mann Consulting cow

Mature Market Experts: more mature market news and stats more often: Marketing to Baby Boomers and the Mature MarketBy Tom Mann, TR Mann Consulting: My partners at TR Mann Consulting and I regularly receive emails and phone calls from reporters, bloggers, advertising agencies, marketing firms, and consumer good manufactures asking us what the secret is understanding Baby Boomers, seniors, and the Mature Market. I would argue that there are no secrets just refined techniques. Here are some baby boomer and mature market marketing basics:

How is marketing to baby boomers different from marketing to the rest of the mature market or the public in general?

For decades now, marketers have been selling their clients on demographic breakouts. They tell you that the baby boomer generation (the 76 million Americans born between 1946 and 1964) represent unlimited herd-like opportunities.  On top of the 76 million American Boomer goldmine is another six to eight million immigrant boomers.

The magic demographic breakout? People born between 1946 and 1955 are called leading-edge boomers by these marketers. Those born between 1956 to 1964 are commonly referred to as late- or trailing-edge boomers.

These lazy marketers will tell you that these are two sociologically distinct target audiences . . . the “leading-edge boomers” grew up during the Vietnam War era. They will tell you that they were shaped by the “cultural revolution,” modern feminism (remember Billy Jean King and Bobby Riggs?), the Beatles, the assassinations of JFK and Martin Luther King, and the civil rights.

And yes, these events did influence some of their decisions but unfortunately for marketers, it’s much more complex than that. Boomers and the mature market (like all humans) are driven more by their personal needs (remember Maslow’s pyramid?) and the stage of life they are currently in.

In short, marketers need to understand that it’s about “stage” . . . not age. In other words, where is that individual in their personal journey? Just because we are from the same generation doesn’t mean were in the same stage.

David Wolfe, one of my favorite bloggers and a true expert on aging states on his blog Ageless Marketing:

“Needs drive our behavior. Our need to be physically and mentally comfortable, whole, safe and secure does not change from one generation to the next. In Maslow’s hierarchy, that bundle of needs is the most basic of all needs. Then, our need for love and to be loved never changes from one generation to the next. The same holds true of our need for self-esteem and the esteem of others.

What does change from generation to generation are the ways in which we strive to meet our needs.”

By approaching consumer’s with a “stage mentality” new targeting opportunities arise. My favorite example of this is one of my clients, GRAND Magazine. GRAND doesn’t address the readers’ age; it addresses the stage of life this group (Grandparents) has just entered. By recognizing the importance of this role, the grandparent role, GRAND and its advertisers, connect with their audience on a much deeper level. Think about it this way, there are over 72 million grandparents in America, and according to Age Wave Communications they’ll spend over 30 billion this year on their grandchildren. And I would say that $30 Billion is low, I’ve seen estimates of over $75 billion a year!

Because we believe it’s about stage, NOT age, at TR Mann Consulting we have created a different set of lens for looking at the sales process called the Maslow-Mann Brand Match. The great thing about this approach is that unlike the traditional marketing approach it’s inclusive, rather than “cutting out” market segments . . . so your market opportunities are bigger, not smaller. For example, did you know that the average age of a grandparent in the U.S. is 48? If you applied a traditional approach to reaching grandparents (a presumed age) you would miss much of the market.

Why are so many people and companies talking about boomers and the mature market now? How much buying power do boomers and matures have?

You have to remember, every eight seconds, another boomer turns 50. Over 50% of the households in the U.S. are now headed up by a baby boomer. And the mature market continues to grow at an incredible rate; by 2010 one-third of the U.S. population will be over 50. By 2020, one in five Americans will be over 65.

More importantly, they control the bulk of the nation’s wealth  . . . and they shop! According to a recent study by Nielsen and Hallmark Channels, households with baby boomer members account for nearly $230 billion in sales of consumer packaged goods and represent 55% of total consumer packaged goods sales.

Those numbers get even bigger when you include all the mature market, the 78 million American seniors who were 50 or older as of 2001 controlled $28 trillion, or 67% of the country’s wealth.

The mature market controls 70 to 79% of all the financial assets, 80% of all the savings accounts; 62% of all large Wall Street asset accounts; and 66% of all the money invested in the stock market.

Boomer women in particular will control the bulk of the mature market’s wealth. By 2010, women are expected to control 60% of all wealth in the U.S., according to a study from Allianz Life Insurance Company.

If you want to see more of these amazing numbers on mature women, click here.

What is the best way to market to boomers and the mature market?

Boomers and seniors are at completely different stages of their lives. It’s important to identify which stages most closely align with your product or service.

·        Do they have kids at home? Young or returned to the nest?

·        Do they have parents at home?

·        Are they healthy? What ailments do they have?

·        Are they retired?

·        Are they active?

The point is, that by acknowledging that marketing is a whole lot harder than just selling to a “herd” of boomers you’ll start to position your product more carefully.

Aside from physical ailments and illnesses, as we age and mature, we tend to proceed further up Maslow’s pyramid with our needs becoming less materialistic and more emotional/spiritual. Creating advertising that connects emotionally and logically is essential. This is one of the reasons TR Mann Consulting likes to use testimonials for our clients. Testimonials tell stories, they connect emotionally and logically. Plus, they maximize the principals of authority and social proof (The principles of influence: Consistency, Likability, Authority, Social Proof, Scarcity, and Reciprocity — as taught by researcher, Dr. Robert Cialdini).

Next, you have to take in consideration the visual and psychological differences between the different stages. One stage might be “elderly with declining health.” For the 65+ audience your ads should look dramatically different than if you were targeting younger boomers exclusively. Why? Because vision becomes an issue for print and TV, as do fast cuts in TV commercials. Although, in my opinion, all your ads should include these inclusive visual techniques . . . after all, why cut out potential customers? (If you’re interested in learning more about the mature market and vision, click here, then go to the bottom of the page and select “Vision and Aging.”)

Want to learn more about Baby Boomers, Seniors, and the Mature Market?

Of course, an article this short can’t possibly cover a topic this complex and do it justice. But hopefully, it does stop you from buying the traditional “herd-mentality” marketing approach being sold by most marketers for reaching the Boomers. If you’d like to learn more to improve your chances for marketing success with the mature market, give TR Mann Consulting a call at 410-292-4333.


Mature Market Experts Stat of The Day: Exercise

j0309147 Mature Market Experts bikingIs the mature market exercising enough? Sadly, the answer is no.

“Statistics from the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta show that only 28 percent of seniors ages 65-74 engage in the recommended amount of physical activity, while 34 percent are totally inactive. Only 24 percent of seniors over 75 exercise at recommended levels, while 46 percent remain completely inactive.”


I recently attended the International Council on Active Aging (ICAA) and presented some ideas on how retirement communities and fitness centers could engage the mature market through relational marketing. Regardless of your product or service, many of the techniques I discuss in this PowerPoint are effective ways to cost-efficiently market while building strong, lasting relationships. To see the presentation, click here on: TR Mann Consulting – Relational Marketing.

By the way, several years ago the AARP in conjunction with the ICAA did a study on terminology . . . the mature market reacted very negatively towards the term “exercise” while the term “active” tested very positively.

Mature Market Experts Stat of The Day: 5 Truths about U.S. Health Care

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Discrepancies among life expectancy in the mature market? “Despite its vast medical resources, the U.S. ranks just 34th in life expectancy, at 77.9 years. That number masks the large disparities that exist within the U.S. On average, Asian-American women live the longest-88.8 years- while African-American men have the shortest lives, 69.4 years.”

Source: Time Magazine

Excellent graphics from Time Magazine on how long we live.

Tom Peter’s PowerPoint ties into this same subject. I published this last week, but it’s worth posting again. It took Tom ten years to build this PowerPoint! Tons of interesting stats . . . I don’t agree with everything Tom says but this is well worth reading.

Note: My take on this subject is that while we can make many, many, many improvements to our health care system, it’s still the best one in the world. Unfortunately, we also have the worst health habits (diet, exercise, stress). Until we start taking better care of ourselves and demanding better food choices, we will be fighting an uphill battle. Boomers will lead the charge for healthier choices . . . those that provide them these options will reap the rewards!

I think my TR Mann Consulting teammate Dr. Gary Applebaum’s take on this subject is a balanced take on the subject: Sick Care – Part 1 and Sick Care – Part 2.

Mature Market Experts Stat of The Day: Polypharmacy


Polypharmacy is most common among the mature market over age 65, about one-fifth of whom take at least 10 medications a week. Because the body absorbs, metabolizes, and rids itself of drugs more slowly with age, a dose considered safe for a middle-age woman can be toxic to her parent. In fact, the Institute of Medicine estimates that at least 1.5 million adverse drug events occur in the United States every year, thousands of them fatal. Studies indicate that about one-third of these drug reactions among senior citizens — and 42 percent of serious, life-threatening, or fatal events — are preventable.

Source: MSNBC

REQUIRED READING: Tom Peter’s PowerPoint on Health Care

(While I don’t agree with everything Tom says, there is some pretty powerful information here . . . I’d be interested in your thoughts)

Inspiring the 65+ Market To Act

I recently presented to T. Rowe Price on inspiring the mature market to act.  T. Rowe is clearly the cream of the crop with an amazing culture. They are constantly probing for new opportunities and then measuring the risk/reward probabilities. When you ask the employees about the collegial atmosphere on campus, they proudly talk about a bottom-up decision-making process. This disciplined investment process results in solid long-term investments for their customers. It’s also the reason 64 portfolio managers and 16 portfolio manager/analysts remain at T. Rowe Price an average of 13 years, roughly twice the industry average. Truly, an amazing company that allows you to “invest with confidence.”

Anyway, if you have the time to invest (pun intended), I’ve put the presentation up on my site. This comes in two flavors, long and short. The longer version is the PowerPoint with audio behind it. Or, if you’re just looking for a short snippet, I’ve also posted some of the actual video footage.