The Silver Pound – spurn at your peril

Most clients chase the younger market, but the real value for many is found in baby boomers.

A surprising number of AJ clients say their target audience is younger than their customer profile suggests.  They’re embarrassed about their ‘mature’, old or retired customers and look for help to target a younger audience.  AJ has lost accounts over the years in this desire to re-brand to attract the younger, ‘cooler’, urbanite market – seemingly cash rich, time poor.

Look at the figures though, and it just doesn’t add up. As we outlined in New pound coin bang on trend, the value and size of the ‘silver pound’ is increasing rapidly.  Retirees are the fastest-growing sector, estimated to comprise 40% of the population by 2025.  They spend over £43 billion a year, an increase of 53% over the last 10 years, compared to 21% in the non-retired age group.

With more disposable income than any other age group, they’re making the most of it, with spend focused on enjoying themselves.

The retirement market is not ‘old’ and, many would admit, not always mature. As well as adding years to life, today’s retirees are putting plenty of life into those years.  They are often mortgage free, house proud and holiday more than once a year.

If companies look to re-brand, this market responds to a fresh creative approach.  Move away from a ‘traditional’ ad, but don’t be ashamed of this older audience.  Quite the opposite, embrace all it represents. Connect with these consumers; they can transform your business.  They are less price sensitive, valuing customer service and reputation.  Recommendations are important and offer your cheapest and most lucrative sales. Focus on exceeding expectations, and your customer journey could result in better margins and ultimately profit.

Find out more about embracing the value of the silver pound. Contact Lesley Bowman on 01225 758222 or lesley@aja.co.uk.

Black Friday sales – trick or treat?

Hot on the heels of the last commercial ‘event’, Halloween, we’re fast approaching Black Friday. But how easily are consumers persuaded to part with their money?

Shoppers used to eagerly await the January sales for the post-Christmas bargains. Then the sales moved forward to Boxing Day, seeing the keenest camping out over Christmas to make sure they were at the head of the queue.

Now we have adopted Black Friday from the US. Starting as a single day flash sale of electrical goods the day after Thanksgiving, it extended quickly across every retail sector. Joined by Cyber Monday in recent years, the last weekend of November has become a pre-Christmas shopping bonanza. Last year spending increased by 6% over this period.

As the sales move earlier and earlier, starting even nearer the beginning of November this year, how does this impact Christmas sales?  Do sales increase overall or simply move forward, leaving consumers shopped out by mid-December?

It would appear not, Boxing Day sales increased last year.

Clear trends are also appearing in pre-Christmas spending. Black Friday (or Black November?) has become a time people buy for themselves, leaving December to remain as the key time for buying gifts.

Can we therefore simply create ‘events’ and expect people to keep spending money?  It seems we can.

Chinese Singles’ Day began in 2009 as a bargain day for young singletons. Held on the 11th November, maximising the single number (11.11), it is now the biggest shopping day of the year for all Chinese shoppers.  Sales rocketed from $9 billion in 2014 to $18 billion just two years later.

So where is this going?  Grey Monday, Pink Wednesday, Divorced Day……….?!  Wherever it goes, consumers are keen to spend.

Find out how we can help you capitalise on that appetite.  Contact Lesley Bowman on 01225 758222 or lesley@aja.co.uk.