Friday, September 16, 2011

Affluent consumers are not all the same

The 14,000 respondent, Ipsos Mendelsohn research study looks at the behaviours of affluent US consumers - defined as those with an income of $100,000+.

According to the firm, in 2010, 5% of affluent households owned an e-reader. This year, 14% own one.

Last year, 33% owned a smartphone versus 43% this year. This year, affluent consumers spent, on average, 30.3 hours on the Internet versus 25.3 hours last year. In addition, 57% of affluent households visited Facebook in the past 30 days compared with  50% last year. A similar increase occurred for YouTube, Amazon, Netflix and Pandora.

These are signicant changes in behavior over the course of only 12 months.

While the 24.5 million affluent households are only 21% of total U.S. households, they represent 60% of all U.S. household income. They hold 70% of U.S. net worth. 

Perhaps it is not surprising that affluent consumers who are 65+ are the wealthiest, with a $1.6 million dollar net worth on average. A quarter of them own a luxury car, and 16% are in a country club, twice the percentage of Boomers.

These older consumers are most likely to have a 'buy America' mentality. They are the most likely group to keep up with financial news - probably because they have the most wealth to lose.

As you can see, these affluent consumers are an important group with rapidly evolving purchasing patterns and lots and lots of them are older rather than young. Dick Stroud.

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