Sep 28, 2021
Visit our sister site:

Front Page, Industry News

THE BRIEF: Still spending after all these years

By TO411Daily Columnist
Linda Chandler

Goodness gracious, was I ever relieved to write this week’s Brief. And why, you might ask?

Because thanks to a recent article in the inestimable New York Times, people over 50 (like me!) can emerge from the premature grave marketers have dumped us in, and reclaim our right to be a consumer-viable demographic again.

This is not because Betty White delivered great numbers for NBC on SNL, though there is something to be said about that. The boomer resurrection has more to do with the financial havoc the recession has rained on the 18 to 25 to 45ers. 

To every marketer’s amazement, the only recent gain in employment has been among women aged 55 and over. “Full-time employment has returned to the level of October 2008 for the first time.”

“According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, those people aged 45 to 54 and 55 to 64 had the highest median weekly earnings of any age segment in the United States: $844 and $860, respectively. Meanwhile, those 20 to 24 had weekly earnings of only $454. Those who are 25 to 34 earned $682.”* Targeting the youth market exclusively? Big mistake.

Guess who’s paying for dinner? Boomers are. And Canadian mogul, Moses Znaimer gleaned that, owned it, and built an empire around it in 2007. First he renamed his 50-plus target, calling them ‘Zoomers’, which means Boomers with ‘zip’. Then he defined them as a group having the “Body of a 65 year old. Mind of a 45 year old. Heart of a teenager. And someone who controls 1/3 of all Canadian wealth.”* 

Znaimer’s ZoomerMedia owns two radio stations, CARP (the Canadian Association of Retired Persons), and Zoomer Magazine which in total target 3.3 million Canadian baby boomers aged 40 to 49 and 11.2 million that are 50-plus, for a total of 14.5 million…This group controls more than half of all spending in Canada, buys 58% of the cars, 55% of the vacations…”*. Yet, in more ways than 14.5 million, The Brief believes the marketers have labeled a market they don’t understand. Just listen to ZoomerRadio on 740AM and you’ll get what I mean.

Nine commercials and zero minutes to live. Targeted to Zoomers are not commercials for air travel, or Diet Coke, or Nike – or anything with zip. But commercial after commercial that make The Brief conclude that time is of the essence and what time is left for my generation is brief. Yesterday’s mid-day programming included the following:

  1. A commercial for funeral arrangements.

  2. A remedy for Joint pain.

  3. A spot from Miracle Grow. (Because, of course, we garden).

  4. Insurance for Long Term Care.

  5. Medicine for muscle strain relief and joint pain. Again!

  6. A promo for a show about Dean Martin starring his son, Deano.

  7. Retirement investment advice from Appraisal Institutes of Canada.

  8. A message from the Naturopathic Board for – you guessed it – pain!

  9. A commercial from Tridel announcing a new retirement residence. 

The Brief turned to Brent Bouchez, Founder of Agency Five0 to find out how an advertising agency purposefully reaches the 50-plus market. I learned a lot about how you can inform or insult. 

The Brief: Did you find that there was a lot you didn’t know but thought you knew about this generation?

Bouchez: Yes and no. There is no shortage of data and research on this group. They are the most chronicled generation in history. On the other hand, anyone who tries to talk to them as “boomers” will fail. 

The Brief: Yes! 

Bouchez: There really is no such thing as a boomer, there are simply 80 million people born between 1946 and 1964 (or even 65 or Remember that GenXers will start turning 50 in less than 5 years). And boomer is truly a pejorative term. Nobody uses it to describe themselves in a positive, proud or happy way. 

The Brief: I like to refer to myself as a ‘grown-up’.

Bouchez: At Five0, we’re focused on studying what happens when people mature, when they become true adults, when they figure out who they are, what they want and why they want it. 

In fact, we call what we do “Adults creating marketing and advertising for adults.”

The Brief: That sounds like a reasonable premise for sound advertising. 

Bouchez: Maybe the most surprising thing we have learned in the last year and a half is that this is a group of mostly happy people. People who have learned a lot about life and really like how they think today.

That, and the fact that people over 50 have more sex than any other age group.

The Brief: Perhaps that ties into why we’re so darn happy? That along with the money to maintain a vital lifestyle - that’s what our generational magazine tells us. Have you seen Zoomer Magazine – Canada’s Boomer Lifestyle Magazine?

Bouchez: Since I’ve said how we feel about the term boomer, I imagine you can assume my animosity towards a name like Zoomer. It’s boomer on some kind of grammatical steroids. That said, I do think the magazine looks nice and there are some good pieces in it. And it’s far, far better than most publications in the category.

The Brief: Yes. I agree. The content is superior to the conceit. 

Bouchez: The more we do this, the more we find that the general rules of journalism tend to be thrown out the window when it comes to writing and editing for the 50+ crowd. All of a sudden, everything is labeled ‘over 50’, How to handle your money ‘over 50’, how to eat ‘over 50’, how to have sex ‘over 50’. I don’t understand why a magazine or a website can’t target this group with it’s concept and editorial without saying over 50 in every headline. Just make something that talks about things I like and need and I’ll decide how old I should be to read it. 

The Brief: They’re now targeting 45-plus. If I were 45, I’d be pissed.

Bouchez: And switching to 45 changes nothing.

The Brief: Is this group as socially connected to brands via digital devices as other age groups? Are they interested in CRM?

Bouchez: This group is as connected as they want to be. They have the technology, they like their ipads and blackberrys, but they will only use something like Facebook or Twitter if they feel it makes their lives better, they won’t be there just because all the other kids are doing it…

For a huge percentage of this group, social media is still called a phone conversation or at least a note through email. But, for what it’s worth, companies like Groupon are finding huge success with the older target because more of them carry smart phones than any other age group. Because they can afford them.

The Brief: How are you engaging them media-wise?

Bouchez: That is really the great thing about talking to this group, they like advertising and they expect it. This is a group that grew up with an understanding of the relationship between the media, the advertisers and the consumers.

We find that the percentages lean to television and print to create the image and attitude for brands, while we use the web as a provider of information.

In many ways, the web is the new point-of-sale and brochure/catalog. I have to say that I am always amazed when I see a marketer still printing things… everyone we talk to in this category automatically goes to the web for information about products and services. Which makes the need for websites to be smart and easily navigable paramount to selling.

The Brief: Any insights you can share about the what, why, where and how you exist exclusively for this post-deceased demographic?

Bouchez: The insight that I would put forth is this: If the CEOs and CFOs of most major brands in this country could hear what we hear in focus groups, research panels, blogs, speeches and other dialogues with consumers over the age of 50 or even 40, they would be shocked and horrified. 

Most of these people look at the commercials they see on TV and the ads they see on the web and say simply ”I don’t get it” or “What are they trying to tell me?” or “Why should I buy their product?” or “What is their product?” or “That’s just stupid” or “I would go out of my way to buy another product just because that commercial is so insulting.” 

And quite often, they do.

The Brief thanks Brent Bouchez for talking to my generation with intelligence, wit and wisdom and not as a cliche. Being lumped into a demographic is somewhat like being picked for the wrong team. We are on the whole distinctly individual human and bonded by what is universal and unchanging. Life. Love. And the pursuit of happiness in the face of acid reflex; COPD; high cholesterol; erectile dysfunction; hip replacement surgery; bladder problems, leaky gut syndrome; high blood pressure; depression; thoughts of suicide, and adult children who don’t leave home without us…

With peace and love from Woodstock and Crosby Stills, Nash – Woodstock

Sources
* In Shift, Ads Try to Entice Over-55 Set By BILL CARTER and TANZINA VEGA Published: May 13, 2011
* http://www.tradingeconomics.com/canada/unemployment-rate
* http://zoomers.ning.com/profile/MosesZnaimer?xg_source=activity
* http://network.nationalpost.com/np/blogs/wealthyboomer/archive/2008/02/28/znaimer-targets-zoomer-generation-with-new-media-empire.aspx
* Brent Bouchez Agency Five-0

—–

Comment to Linda at this address: thebrief@to411.com.
LinkedIn // Facebook // Twitter

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Front Page, Industry News

THE BRIEF: Still spending after all these years

By TO411Daily Columnist
Linda Chandler

Goodness gracious, was I ever relieved to write this week’s Brief. And why, you might ask?

Because thanks to a recent article in the inestimable New York Times, people over 50 (like me!) can emerge from the premature grave marketers have dumped us in, and reclaim our right to be a consumer-viable demographic again.

This is not because Betty White delivered great numbers for NBC on SNL, though there is something to be said about that. The boomer resurrection has more to do with the financial havoc the recession has rained on the 18 to 25 to 45ers. 

To every marketer’s amazement, the only recent gain in employment has been among women aged 55 and over. “Full-time employment has returned to the level of October 2008 for the first time.”

“According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, those people aged 45 to 54 and 55 to 64 had the highest median weekly earnings of any age segment in the United States: $844 and $860, respectively. Meanwhile, those 20 to 24 had weekly earnings of only $454. Those who are 25 to 34 earned $682.”* Targeting the youth market exclusively? Big mistake.

Guess who’s paying for dinner? Boomers are. And Canadian mogul, Moses Znaimer gleaned that, owned it, and built an empire around it in 2007. First he renamed his 50-plus target, calling them ‘Zoomers’, which means Boomers with ‘zip’. Then he defined them as a group having the “Body of a 65 year old. Mind of a 45 year old. Heart of a teenager. And someone who controls 1/3 of all Canadian wealth.”* 

Znaimer’s ZoomerMedia owns two radio stations, CARP (the Canadian Association of Retired Persons), and Zoomer Magazine which in total target 3.3 million Canadian baby boomers aged 40 to 49 and 11.2 million that are 50-plus, for a total of 14.5 million…This group controls more than half of all spending in Canada, buys 58% of the cars, 55% of the vacations…”*. Yet, in more ways than 14.5 million, The Brief believes the marketers have labeled a market they don’t understand. Just listen to ZoomerRadio on 740AM and you’ll get what I mean.

Nine commercials and zero minutes to live. Targeted to Zoomers are not commercials for air travel, or Diet Coke, or Nike – or anything with zip. But commercial after commercial that make The Brief conclude that time is of the essence and what time is left for my generation is brief. Yesterday’s mid-day programming included the following:

  1. A commercial for funeral arrangements.

  2. A remedy for Joint pain.

  3. A spot from Miracle Grow. (Because, of course, we garden).

  4. Insurance for Long Term Care.

  5. Medicine for muscle strain relief and joint pain. Again!

  6. A promo for a show about Dean Martin starring his son, Deano.

  7. Retirement investment advice from Appraisal Institutes of Canada.

  8. A message from the Naturopathic Board for – you guessed it – pain!

  9. A commercial from Tridel announcing a new retirement residence. 

The Brief turned to Brent Bouchez, Founder of Agency Five0 to find out how an advertising agency purposefully reaches the 50-plus market. I learned a lot about how you can inform or insult. 

The Brief: Did you find that there was a lot you didn’t know but thought you knew about this generation?

Bouchez: Yes and no. There is no shortage of data and research on this group. They are the most chronicled generation in history. On the other hand, anyone who tries to talk to them as “boomers” will fail. 

The Brief: Yes! 

Bouchez: There really is no such thing as a boomer, there are simply 80 million people born between 1946 and 1964 (or even 65 or Remember that GenXers will start turning 50 in less than 5 years). And boomer is truly a pejorative term. Nobody uses it to describe themselves in a positive, proud or happy way. 

The Brief: I like to refer to myself as a ‘grown-up’.

Bouchez: At Five0, we’re focused on studying what happens when people mature, when they become true adults, when they figure out who they are, what they want and why they want it. 

In fact, we call what we do “Adults creating marketing and advertising for adults.”

The Brief: That sounds like a reasonable premise for sound advertising. 

Bouchez: Maybe the most surprising thing we have learned in the last year and a half is that this is a group of mostly happy people. People who have learned a lot about life and really like how they think today.

That, and the fact that people over 50 have more sex than any other age group.

The Brief: Perhaps that ties into why we’re so darn happy? That along with the money to maintain a vital lifestyle - that’s what our generational magazine tells us. Have you seen Zoomer Magazine – Canada’s Boomer Lifestyle Magazine?

Bouchez: Since I’ve said how we feel about the term boomer, I imagine you can assume my animosity towards a name like Zoomer. It’s boomer on some kind of grammatical steroids. That said, I do think the magazine looks nice and there are some good pieces in it. And it’s far, far better than most publications in the category.

The Brief: Yes. I agree. The content is superior to the conceit. 

Bouchez: The more we do this, the more we find that the general rules of journalism tend to be thrown out the window when it comes to writing and editing for the 50+ crowd. All of a sudden, everything is labeled ‘over 50’, How to handle your money ‘over 50’, how to eat ‘over 50’, how to have sex ‘over 50’. I don’t understand why a magazine or a website can’t target this group with it’s concept and editorial without saying over 50 in every headline. Just make something that talks about things I like and need and I’ll decide how old I should be to read it. 

The Brief: They’re now targeting 45-plus. If I were 45, I’d be pissed.

Bouchez: And switching to 45 changes nothing.

The Brief: Is this group as socially connected to brands via digital devices as other age groups? Are they interested in CRM?

Bouchez: This group is as connected as they want to be. They have the technology, they like their ipads and blackberrys, but they will only use something like Facebook or Twitter if they feel it makes their lives better, they won’t be there just because all the other kids are doing it…

For a huge percentage of this group, social media is still called a phone conversation or at least a note through email. But, for what it’s worth, companies like Groupon are finding huge success with the older target because more of them carry smart phones than any other age group. Because they can afford them.

The Brief: How are you engaging them media-wise?

Bouchez: That is really the great thing about talking to this group, they like advertising and they expect it. This is a group that grew up with an understanding of the relationship between the media, the advertisers and the consumers.

We find that the percentages lean to television and print to create the image and attitude for brands, while we use the web as a provider of information.

In many ways, the web is the new point-of-sale and brochure/catalog. I have to say that I am always amazed when I see a marketer still printing things… everyone we talk to in this category automatically goes to the web for information about products and services. Which makes the need for websites to be smart and easily navigable paramount to selling.

The Brief: Any insights you can share about the what, why, where and how you exist exclusively for this post-deceased demographic?

Bouchez: The insight that I would put forth is this: If the CEOs and CFOs of most major brands in this country could hear what we hear in focus groups, research panels, blogs, speeches and other dialogues with consumers over the age of 50 or even 40, they would be shocked and horrified. 

Most of these people look at the commercials they see on TV and the ads they see on the web and say simply ”I don’t get it” or “What are they trying to tell me?” or “Why should I buy their product?” or “What is their product?” or “That’s just stupid” or “I would go out of my way to buy another product just because that commercial is so insulting.” 

And quite often, they do.

The Brief thanks Brent Bouchez for talking to my generation with intelligence, wit and wisdom and not as a cliche. Being lumped into a demographic is somewhat like being picked for the wrong team. We are on the whole distinctly individual human and bonded by what is universal and unchanging. Life. Love. And the pursuit of happiness in the face of acid reflex; COPD; high cholesterol; erectile dysfunction; hip replacement surgery; bladder problems, leaky gut syndrome; high blood pressure; depression; thoughts of suicide, and adult children who don’t leave home without us…

With peace and love from Woodstock and Crosby Stills, Nash – Woodstock

Sources
* In Shift, Ads Try to Entice Over-55 Set By BILL CARTER and TANZINA VEGA Published: May 13, 2011
* http://www.tradingeconomics.com/canada/unemployment-rate
* http://zoomers.ning.com/profile/MosesZnaimer?xg_source=activity
* http://network.nationalpost.com/np/blogs/wealthyboomer/archive/2008/02/28/znaimer-targets-zoomer-generation-with-new-media-empire.aspx
* Brent Bouchez Agency Five-0

—–

Comment to Linda at this address: thebrief@to411.com.
LinkedIn // Facebook // Twitter

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Front Page, Industry News

THE BRIEF: Still spending after all these years

By TO411Daily Columnist
Linda Chandler

Goodness gracious, was I ever relieved to write this week’s Brief. And why, you might ask?

Because thanks to a recent article in the inestimable New York Times, people over 50 (like me!) can emerge from the premature grave marketers have dumped us in, and reclaim our right to be a consumer-viable demographic again.

This is not because Betty White delivered great numbers for NBC on SNL, though there is something to be said about that. The boomer resurrection has more to do with the financial havoc the recession has rained on the 18 to 25 to 45ers. 

To every marketer’s amazement, the only recent gain in employment has been among women aged 55 and over. “Full-time employment has returned to the level of October 2008 for the first time.”

“According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, those people aged 45 to 54 and 55 to 64 had the highest median weekly earnings of any age segment in the United States: $844 and $860, respectively. Meanwhile, those 20 to 24 had weekly earnings of only $454. Those who are 25 to 34 earned $682.”* Targeting the youth market exclusively? Big mistake.

Guess who’s paying for dinner? Boomers are. And Canadian mogul, Moses Znaimer gleaned that, owned it, and built an empire around it in 2007. First he renamed his 50-plus target, calling them ‘Zoomers’, which means Boomers with ‘zip’. Then he defined them as a group having the “Body of a 65 year old. Mind of a 45 year old. Heart of a teenager. And someone who controls 1/3 of all Canadian wealth.”* 

Znaimer’s ZoomerMedia owns two radio stations, CARP (the Canadian Association of Retired Persons), and Zoomer Magazine which in total target 3.3 million Canadian baby boomers aged 40 to 49 and 11.2 million that are 50-plus, for a total of 14.5 million…This group controls more than half of all spending in Canada, buys 58% of the cars, 55% of the vacations…”*. Yet, in more ways than 14.5 million, The Brief believes the marketers have labeled a market they don’t understand. Just listen to ZoomerRadio on 740AM and you’ll get what I mean.

Nine commercials and zero minutes to live. Targeted to Zoomers are not commercials for air travel, or Diet Coke, or Nike – or anything with zip. But commercial after commercial that make The Brief conclude that time is of the essence and what time is left for my generation is brief. Yesterday’s mid-day programming included the following:

  1. A commercial for funeral arrangements.

  2. A remedy for Joint pain.

  3. A spot from Miracle Grow. (Because, of course, we garden).

  4. Insurance for Long Term Care.

  5. Medicine for muscle strain relief and joint pain. Again!

  6. A promo for a show about Dean Martin starring his son, Deano.

  7. Retirement investment advice from Appraisal Institutes of Canada.

  8. A message from the Naturopathic Board for – you guessed it – pain!

  9. A commercial from Tridel announcing a new retirement residence. 

The Brief turned to Brent Bouchez, Founder of Agency Five0 to find out how an advertising agency purposefully reaches the 50-plus market. I learned a lot about how you can inform or insult. 

The Brief: Did you find that there was a lot you didn’t know but thought you knew about this generation?

Bouchez: Yes and no. There is no shortage of data and research on this group. They are the most chronicled generation in history. On the other hand, anyone who tries to talk to them as “boomers” will fail. 

The Brief: Yes! 

Bouchez: There really is no such thing as a boomer, there are simply 80 million people born between 1946 and 1964 (or even 65 or Remember that GenXers will start turning 50 in less than 5 years). And boomer is truly a pejorative term. Nobody uses it to describe themselves in a positive, proud or happy way. 

The Brief: I like to refer to myself as a ‘grown-up’.

Bouchez: At Five0, we’re focused on studying what happens when people mature, when they become true adults, when they figure out who they are, what they want and why they want it. 

In fact, we call what we do “Adults creating marketing and advertising for adults.”

The Brief: That sounds like a reasonable premise for sound advertising. 

Bouchez: Maybe the most surprising thing we have learned in the last year and a half is that this is a group of mostly happy people. People who have learned a lot about life and really like how they think today.

That, and the fact that people over 50 have more sex than any other age group.

The Brief: Perhaps that ties into why we’re so darn happy? That along with the money to maintain a vital lifestyle - that’s what our generational magazine tells us. Have you seen Zoomer Magazine – Canada’s Boomer Lifestyle Magazine?

Bouchez: Since I’ve said how we feel about the term boomer, I imagine you can assume my animosity towards a name like Zoomer. It’s boomer on some kind of grammatical steroids. That said, I do think the magazine looks nice and there are some good pieces in it. And it’s far, far better than most publications in the category.

The Brief: Yes. I agree. The content is superior to the conceit. 

Bouchez: The more we do this, the more we find that the general rules of journalism tend to be thrown out the window when it comes to writing and editing for the 50+ crowd. All of a sudden, everything is labeled ‘over 50’, How to handle your money ‘over 50’, how to eat ‘over 50’, how to have sex ‘over 50’. I don’t understand why a magazine or a website can’t target this group with it’s concept and editorial without saying over 50 in every headline. Just make something that talks about things I like and need and I’ll decide how old I should be to read it. 

The Brief: They’re now targeting 45-plus. If I were 45, I’d be pissed.

Bouchez: And switching to 45 changes nothing.

The Brief: Is this group as socially connected to brands via digital devices as other age groups? Are they interested in CRM?

Bouchez: This group is as connected as they want to be. They have the technology, they like their ipads and blackberrys, but they will only use something like Facebook or Twitter if they feel it makes their lives better, they won’t be there just because all the other kids are doing it…

For a huge percentage of this group, social media is still called a phone conversation or at least a note through email. But, for what it’s worth, companies like Groupon are finding huge success with the older target because more of them carry smart phones than any other age group. Because they can afford them.

The Brief: How are you engaging them media-wise?

Bouchez: That is really the great thing about talking to this group, they like advertising and they expect it. This is a group that grew up with an understanding of the relationship between the media, the advertisers and the consumers.

We find that the percentages lean to television and print to create the image and attitude for brands, while we use the web as a provider of information.

In many ways, the web is the new point-of-sale and brochure/catalog. I have to say that I am always amazed when I see a marketer still printing things… everyone we talk to in this category automatically goes to the web for information about products and services. Which makes the need for websites to be smart and easily navigable paramount to selling.

The Brief: Any insights you can share about the what, why, where and how you exist exclusively for this post-deceased demographic?

Bouchez: The insight that I would put forth is this: If the CEOs and CFOs of most major brands in this country could hear what we hear in focus groups, research panels, blogs, speeches and other dialogues with consumers over the age of 50 or even 40, they would be shocked and horrified. 

Most of these people look at the commercials they see on TV and the ads they see on the web and say simply ”I don’t get it” or “What are they trying to tell me?” or “Why should I buy their product?” or “What is their product?” or “That’s just stupid” or “I would go out of my way to buy another product just because that commercial is so insulting.” 

And quite often, they do.

The Brief thanks Brent Bouchez for talking to my generation with intelligence, wit and wisdom and not as a cliche. Being lumped into a demographic is somewhat like being picked for the wrong team. We are on the whole distinctly individual human and bonded by what is universal and unchanging. Life. Love. And the pursuit of happiness in the face of acid reflex; COPD; high cholesterol; erectile dysfunction; hip replacement surgery; bladder problems, leaky gut syndrome; high blood pressure; depression; thoughts of suicide, and adult children who don’t leave home without us…

With peace and love from Woodstock and Crosby Stills, Nash – Woodstock

Sources
* In Shift, Ads Try to Entice Over-55 Set By BILL CARTER and TANZINA VEGA Published: May 13, 2011
* http://www.tradingeconomics.com/canada/unemployment-rate
* http://zoomers.ning.com/profile/MosesZnaimer?xg_source=activity
* http://network.nationalpost.com/np/blogs/wealthyboomer/archive/2008/02/28/znaimer-targets-zoomer-generation-with-new-media-empire.aspx
* Brent Bouchez Agency Five-0

—–

Comment to Linda at this address: thebrief@to411.com.
LinkedIn // Facebook // Twitter

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Advertisements