Mary talks about new Boomer findings, generational influences, the continued importance of understanding lifestage events and how to craft your message to archetypal Boomer segments: Conventional, Transitional and Aspirational profiles. We talk about Seasoned Sexuality, the new blossoming Boomer woman, as well as the Boomer's search for meaning, significance and contribution and how that can be leveraged with brands, services and the appropriate positioning. Walter Thompson. So meet Mary Brown.
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Susan Bratton: Welcome Mary. Mary Brown: Thank you. Susan Bratton: Yeah, absolutely. So, I first found out about you Mary when we were introduced by Joe Pine. Yes he was one of our keynote speakers at the summit this year. So my question for you Mary is to set the stage for the boomer world today. Mary Brown: Well, a lot has changed since I wrote my book just in the last two years, particularly in regard to awareness of the older consumer. Susan Bratton: So you talked about the first boomer turning 65, and obviously at that point in your life you might be starting to think about retiring, although I know a lot of boomers are pushing retirement off and continuing to work as long as they possibly can, which is probably a big boomer trend.
What are some of the big life stage events that marketers are leveraging now in the boomer generation? Mary Brown: One where we see so much opportunity is the empty nest phase.
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But this taps into a bigger point around lifestage and Boomers. Our research shows that between the ages of 50 and 59 is when we people negotiate the greatest number of new lifestage transitions simultaneously, be it caregiving, becoming a grandparent, second careers, remarrying, divorce, dealing with aging or health issues, emptynesting, etc… and this is good news for marketers, because every new lifestage they have to negotiate is our opportunity to create solutions for them.
Susan Bratton: And those are the millennials primarily, right? The boomerangs are the millenials? Mary Brown: Exactly. Susan Bratton: Our boomer children? Mary Brown: Yes. Once the kids leave there can be a lot of psychological and financial changes that happen at this point both positive and negative. Often, it opens up the space for boomers to finally focus back on themselves a bit more. And with kids going out of the house there tends to be a bump in discretionary spending, of having a little bit more in your wallet.
Susan Bratton: And they live longer. Mary Brown: And we live longer.
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In fact, at the turn of the century, , the average lifespan was about 50 years old. And today the average lifespan is at least 80 years old, 30 years longer… Susan Bratton: 50 is the new So back in , when you were 40 or 50, you were old. You see publications, television programs, websites, that have specific 40plus relevant content now. You saw less of that two or three or four years ago. Susan Bratton: Yeah.
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I like that you bust the stereotype, that you talk about how innovative the boomer market is and how willing they are to try new things. Bean, you had a huge variety of marketers who are savvy to the power of the boomer. The question I have, in working with all these brands and all the brands that you represent for JWT Boom, what advice can you give to someone listening to this show today about how to speak to a boomer?
Mary Brown: The biggest mistake that people make is thinking you can do it with a broad stroke kind of sweeping generality. It is also a mistake to rely on past stereotypes of aging. And very often a younger boomer is experiencing different things than an older boomer, or two boomers the same age are at very different lifestages. A lot of what we do at JWT Boom, is research around segments and subsegments to surface the different values and go beyond age and demographics.
This has allowed me to really expand on the archetypes I talked about in my book, and get more granular around values and motivations. And, you know, as much as we wish we could have one message that would connect with everyone, it is hard to do. You know, the leading edge boomers were not downloading content at all.
The trailing edge were downloading all the time. So that 15 year difference was huge. And also, Instant Messenger. Susan Bratton: Their kids were getting them into that stuff. Lemke Sociology Soc Dr. Raley Unger Contribution These databases are made possible through the generous contribution of W. Books Cute, quaint, hungry, and romantic : the aesthetics of consumerism Call Number: Celebrity culture in the United States Call Number: Work, leisure and the environment : the vicious circle of overwork and over consumption Call Number: Freaks, geeks, and cool kids : American teenagers, schools, and the culture of consumption Call Number: Consuming desires : consumption, culture, and the pursuit of happiness Call Number: Boom : marketing to the ultimate power consumer--the baby boomer woman Call Number: Not buying it : my year without shopping Call Number: The Effortless Experience Matthew Dixon.
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With more than 20 years as an art director, creative director, and brand champion working with many of the country's top companies, she has distinguished herself as a leading voice on the subject of marketing to Baby-Boomer women. Carol Orsborn, Ph. She is also the recipient of the public relations industry's highest award, the Silver Anvil. Rating details. Book ratings by Goodreads. Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews.
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