This week's Advertising Age includes another article about marketers' new-found interest in today's Boomer Consumer. This time, the focus is on new media vehicles.
This coverage is encouraging, but also disappointing.
That's because the young reporter, Abbey Klaassen, a 2002 graduate of Drake University (you can find just about anything using the World Wide Web), exhibits some "ageism" in her article, as well as out-of-date thinking.
An older reporter, perhaps Boomer aged, would have written a very different piece in both content and tone.
For example, Young Abbey (see, we can be ageist, too), says "Media companies have targeted boomers all their lives, but interest in the demo seemed to wane a bit as the majority of them approached their golden years."
A Boomer reporter would not refer to Boomers as approaching their "golden years." That term applies to someone in their mid-70's and older. The median age of today's Boomer Consumer is just now 50. The "golden years" is an outdated concept for anyone under 75.
Young Abbey writes that Web start-ups are targeting Boomers who are 50+, then she adds "And then, of course, there's standbys Parade, Reader's Digest and AARP magazine." [It should probably say "there are standbys" but everyone's an editor these days].
Again, a Boomer reporter would never claim those three publications as "old standbys" for their generation. The Boomer standbys are Rolling Stone, People and TIME. Just because a Boomer reaches age 50 doesn't mean they automatically stop reading what interests them in order to read some age-focused magazine.
The overall tone reads to us like Abbey (and her editors) feel that it is risky for media companies to focus content on the 50+ consumer. Again, that is out-of-date thinking. The bigger risk is ignoring Boomers.
How do you read it?