Monday, December 08, 2008

The Unretired.

This is not a very cheerful article from Business Week that describes the tranche of older people who retired and now find themselves suffering from the results of property and stock market asset deflation.

The proof offered about the scale of the problem are things like, the largest career site for people over 50, saw traffic more than double, from 250,000 visitors in July to 600,000 in November. In April, a survey conducted by AARP found that 17% of responding retirees over 50 were considering or already going back to work. I wonder what that figure is today!

As I have said before, the people who have assets (the 50-plus) have been hit the hardest during Phase 1 of the recession (The ‘credit crunch’). At least most of this group had some assets, unlike most of their kids.

Phase 2 (the real recession) is affecting all ages. It is said that London is 3 meals away from anarchy, meaning that the food logistics relies on a constant flow of refilling of the supermarket shelves. The same applies to the majority of households (at least in the UK) who are 3 pay cheques away from financial hell.

I am afraid the Business Week story is going to be replayed time and time again but with younger and younger people being the focus.

So what is the marketing message in all of this? Be very, very targeted in the groups where you spend your diminishing marketing dollars/pounds/Euros. As the recession broadens to hit all ages and social groups you really need to think if you have identified the “recession proof” consumers in your customer database. Well have you? Dick Stroud

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