Monday, November 5, 2007

Boomer Women and Apparel Retailing

An article in last week's The Wall Street Journal about retailing to older women (and Boomer women), generated this discussion at

Essentially the debate is whether it is possible to create and market retail apparel brands to women over 35 today. Reading the various comments and you may come away with the same conclusions we did.

First, the people participating at are smart. Most comments ring true and offer sound marketing advice (in summary, don't treat everyone over 35 the same -- segment, segment, segment).

Second, this isn't easy and boomer women are a moving target. That means consumer research is probably worth the investment.

Third, when it comes to fashion and apparel, the older a consumer gets, the more inner-directed they become. It's less about what others think and more about what you yourself think.

We're not the first to realize this (see David Wolfe's book, Ageless Marketing). But we're not the last either, judging by the mistakes already made by retailers in this category.

Brands and retailers in all categories that understand that the underlying motivation for older consumers is satisfying the inner self will succeed.

1 comment:

Joanie said...

Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU! As a 51-year-old boomer, I am in relatively good shape, but not in the mood to wear "low riders", I'm short but too sophisticated to wear "cutsy wootsy" clothing geared towards 5'4" and under, and love classy clothing!

Major retailers nowadays are still gearing their women's clothing to Gen Xers and younger, and it's frustrating! Therefore, I tend to search online and in specialty shops for fabulous clothing. What a shame that retailers haven't caught on yet. We're getting older AND better.


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