I heard it again on MSNBC, ”the most-coveted demo of 18- to 34-year-olds…” What? I just heard that the demo was the hardest hit in the Great Recession with more than 20% unemployed, and even more underemployed. This is the coveted demo?
You would think the marketing press could get it right, but even they are in love with what the “younger generation” is buying. Right now, it looks to me like their boomer parents are doing the buying.
Apple has figured it out: They are selling the iPad2 on regular, old-fashioned broadcast television, in newspapers and in magazines (I just picked up a New Yorker magazine and the iPad2 had the back cover). Look around. This breakthrough technology is in the hands of people with gray hair (if the hair isn’t gray, they are coloring their hair).
As Emenim says, “I’m not afraid. To take a stand.” So finally take a stand. The broadcast networks are drying up trying to chase the coveted demo. When CBS realized that its core audience is older, it quickly rose to number 1 status. When the movie industry realizes the same thing, boomers will start going back to movies. The coveted demo to me is the one that is buying. Drink a Red Bull, tighten up your flip-flops, and start fishing where the fish are. Covet performance, not a fleeting perception.
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Have you ever gone to a bait shop or looked at all the fishing lures at a store? Hundreds, maybe even thousands of lures. There seems to be more different types of fishing lures than there are fish.
Each lure is designed to attract a specific fish. And different lures attract different fish–and different lures attract the same fish on different conditions, days, and times of days. Yet, when we talk about target audiences (people, who are far more complex than fish) we are quick to categorize the message into one nice neat lure—that will work for all people, at all times, in all media.
Take a look at this chart from a study by Harris Interactive. It shows that even in the teen years, the likes and dislikes of teenagers are impacted by allowances, part-time jobs, independence, activities, access to the Internet, and food.
It is a lot easier to just say, “I’ve got just the right lure for 10-to-18-year olds so we only need one ad.” If that were the case, a lot of fishing enthusiast would only need one hook and a worm.
How is your message tackle box looking?
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Posted in Uncategorized, tagged 25-54, benefits, boomers, Branding, demographics, Mark Mathis, mark on marketing, Mark on Marketing blog, ME&V, strategic communications on November 15, 2010 |
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I continue to hear people talk about younger demographics as the sweet spot of a marketing plans. I say baloney. The sweet spot is boomer-age people and here is just one more reason.
According to the Burearu of Labor Statistics reported by the New York Times, unemployment for 15-24 is 16.7%. For 25-44 it is 8.2% and 45+ is 6.3%. 1 in 8 of Millennials have boomeranged back home to parents. Brent Bouchez, partner at agency FiveO, says that Boomers have 2.5 times the discretionary spending power of any other demographic group and hold 75% of the nation’s current wealth.
“Yes, but” Boomers are already brand loyal? Are you kidding? I’m going to look at my own brand usage (yes, I’m a Boomer) for some quick research:
||Bud Select 55
There are very few brands that stand up to time. I know this is not scientific, yet every time I see a Boomer carrying an iPad or a Kindle I know that this is a target rich marketing environment. Younger demos, keep looking for those jobs.
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My son and I will share a demo group next year. That is scary on a number of levels. You’ve probably heard of the ’25-54′ demographic. We in the marketing world use it as a measure of what an audience segment is.
Even though I worked in television for years, I was never really comfortable with some of the broad demographics. My son is going to be 25 and I’m going to be in the upper reaches of the demo. We do have shared likes and interests, but to think a 25-year-old and a 50-ish person will be moved by the same message seems like a real reach.
It is why many churches are having difficulty growing. They are looking to attract a broad, 25 to 54 (and higher), demographic. I’ve talked with many in churches who are having trouble reaching out to young people. If you are a church of older people, you shouldn’t necessarily attract younger audiences. How could you craft your message/sermon to reach both young and old people? Instead of going after more young people, go after more of the people who represent your church audience. It will make you more targeted and more successful. When you try to reach a demo outside of your core, you risk disenfranchising both audiences.
I believe we’ve also fallen back into the one-size-demo-fits-all mentality for website homepages. Most organizations and companies have one website. Colleges and universities, who are trying to hit teenagers, current students, staff/faculty, grad students and alumni have one home page and one website for everyone. It seems to me that soon we will need to create multiple websites for the different audience groups with specific interests, benefits, music and video for that audience. Just like television which moved from a few general channels to cable with channels for varying audience tastes.
The family doesn’t sit around one TV anymore to watch a program that fits everyone. We now have our own TVs and we watch what better fits our age and interests. So while my son watches The Colbert Report, I’m watching CSI: New York. So narrow your sights on tight demo groups and change your message to better reach that audience. You can’t be everything to everyone — especially not at the same time.
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