Thursday, January 19, 2017

'This I Know' is my third and FINAL book about the Ageing Business

Fifteen years ago I started consulting, writing speaking about how companies must adapt to a future where there are lots and lots more older consumers. I thought my book Marketing to the Ageing Consumer, would be the last one – but I was wrong - there was still more to be said.

It is tragic and unavoidable that companies, government and older people are woefully unprepared for the economic and social consequences of population ageing. How can this be? For decades we have known the facts and implications of demographic change and what needs to be done.

The consequences of our unwillingness to adapt, to the new realities of an older population are, to put it mildly, horrendous. The future for most older people is going to be bleak.

Most companies will scramble about trying to make themselves fit for purpose to serve an older customer base. The implications of Brexit and Mr Trump's election are minor compared to those of population ageing. This reality will dominate government agendas for the next decade and beyond.

But, and it is an enormous but, these failings create massive business opportunities. For smart marketers, that understand what is happening and have the courage to act, the next decade could a bonanza.

My final book is short. You should be able to read it in a couple of hours. I have done my best to jettison as much ‘management speak’ as possible. Be warned, it is frank and I expect will annoy some of those who work in the ‘ageing business’. If they disagree with what I have said, I am sure they will make their views known.

The book is published by Amazon in paper and Kindle versions and should be available in most countries.

This I Know has been fun to write. I hope it is equally fun to read. Dick Stroud

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

We are obsessed with imaginary generational differences but ignore the most obvious and certain one

Every generation has its own 'gurus' who profess some mystical understanding about the secrets of their generation's psyche, what makes them tick, most importantly, what makes them buy.

Doesn't matter if it is Boomers or Gen Z, there are consultants and journalists who like you to believe they know the marketing secrets of making the generation love your brand or buy your product.

Unfortunately, this Alice in Wonderland world occasionally bumps into reality and its deficiencies are are for all to see.

Kantar Millward Brown recently completed a large study of the attitudes of the generations to advertising and discovered that there are significant similarities in their views and how they respond.

Having surveyed 23,000 consumers across 39 different countries, the research monitored advertising perceptions among Generation X; Baby Boomers, Generation Y and Generation Z.

When asked which ad formats they respond best to, each generation voted in a higher proportion for traditional formats over online ad formats. This clearly surprised the researchers - heavens knows why.

You can read about the research in Marketing Week. 

Generational marketing is a bit like astrology - good fun but you be daft to use it for planning your life.

The crazy thing is that there is a huge difference between the generations, well some of them, that results from the physical. sensory and cognitive ageing. This is not some theory it is 100% certain - yet most marketers ignore the fact. Much more fun to waffle on about the secrets of Millennial Marketing than to get to grips with what age related issues determine the quality of customer touchpoints

Those bright ones of you who want to know about this subject look here. Dick Stroud

Muscle augmentation could have an enormous impact on the quality of life of older people.

Way back in the early days of Star Trek we were introduced to the concept of the Tricorder - the little device that Dr McCoy would wave at people and get an instant diagnosis of their condition. Real sci-fi nonsense, or so we thought.

You would be brave to bet the iPhone 12, or whatever it is called, will not be packed with innumerable sensors to measure our health and fitness and no doubt have the power to instantly search zillions of records to help diagnose a condition.

Somehow I think we might be going in the same direction with wearable technology that helps power weak muscles. Very much at the boundaries of research at the moment but in a few years something like it will be commercialised.  I very much doubt if it will be available on the NHS!

If you want in image of what I am talking about look at this new company. Dick Stroud