Baby Boomer women are among the most affluent consumers in the market today. Many of us have led successful careers, own property, and aren’t ready to spend our retirement years sitting in a rocking chair. Women over 50 are prominent leaders in business, politics, and entertainment. We are no longer an invisible demographic like our mothers were. But when it comes to brand product marketing do companies recognize what appeals to us or are they passing on opportunities to maximize their return?
Product marketing and fashion Over 50
How many times have you been frustrated shopping for clothes because stores cater to young women under 30 who wear a size zero? As a blogger who looks for brands that offer attractive clothing for Baby Boomer women, it’s not always easy. Banner ads feature young models with tiny waistlines, sleeveless blouses, and short skirts. It’s rare to find one with a stylish older woman that doesn’t look matronly.
You can walk around a mall in circles and never find a sophisticated outfit that fits or would inspire you to drop a load of cash to buy it. It’s not that stylish clothes don’t exist for older women, but you have to search high and low to find something that isn’t dowdy or silly. I’m not one to go for sweaters with pumpkins or baggy “grandma” pants.
Online shopping makes it easier to find what you’re looking for because you can search for specific features like ¾ length sleeves, midi skirts, long tunics, or comfortable shoes. I’m sure Baby Boomer women like Diane Keaton, or Meg Ryan have no trouble finding clothes because they never gain an inch, but the majority of us, who are not content to live in jeans and sweatpants, would love more variety to choose from.
Don’t pitch me on adult diapers
I’m not saying we don’t pee our pants, especially when we laugh, but I don’t see Baby Boomer women getting excited about incontinence products or walk-in tubs. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve received emails from product marketing brands who think that just because I write for women over 50, that’s what my audience wants. We may be “officially” seniors, but we’re still active, engaged, love to travel, and even find romance.
Baby Boomer women are smart and educated
Don’t sell us your snake-oil. One thing I’ve found in the over-50-market is a proliferation of products that claim to heal every ill from leaky gut to forgetfulness. Ads pop up every time we land on Facebook that ends up leading us to long videos hawking weight loss pills or cures for indigestion. Most of these products are expensive and ineffective. Baby Boomers want the facts, clearly, and truthfully. We don’t appreciate being lied to and don’t want to waste our retirement income on useless crap.
Age is a beautiful thing
When Sandra Bullock stood on stage at the Oscar’s this year, the audience was aghast. What did she do to her face? Did her Botox explode? She looked like a Frankenstein experiment gone wrong. She’s always been gorgeous, but I hope she gets her money back from that hideous treatment. Why do older women believe they have to puff up their faces like blowfish to look younger?
Proudly be your authentic self
I applaud older style icons who dress creatively and authentically. Iris Apfel may go a bit overboard but I think she’s fabulous. She’s sticking her middle finger up to what older women are supposed to look like and is truly herself. Another is Lyn Slater, a 64-year-old Fordham Professor whose bold and high-fashion style has turned her into an Accidental Icon. She doesn’t look like your typical Grandma and is a force to be reckoned with.
Older French and Italian women dress elegantly and are revered as fashion consumers. If you’re looking for a fabulous outfit you may have to go to Europe to find it.
Banish derogatory terms for aging
Product marketing to Baby Boomer women frequently uses the term “anti-aging.” It was popularized in the 1980’s by an advertising exec and is still used extensively by skincare and beauty companies to market products for women over 50. Now that we’re older it’s redundant. The phrase is slowly being replaced by terms like age-defying, Pro-age, and Age Perfect. Women over 50 are striving to be vibrant, luminous, and glowing. They react better to product marketing phrases that are positive and empowering.
As a Baby Boomer woman, what attracts you to product marketing for the over 50 market? Please leave a comment below.