Secret to Better Messaging to Older Consumers: Understanding the Intervening Factors

Ageless Marketing has been the traditional marketing adage when communicating to older consumers.  This concept states that marketing approaches should not acknowledge age to avoid offending older consumers or alienating younger ones.


Therefore, to avoid being ageist, the term “ageless” is used instead. But in those attempts to be ageless, age is devalued: the savviness, the maturity, and the wisdom of this older consumer is ignored. An Ageless Marketing approach states that years of living don’t matter. It implies marketers can talk to everyone the same. In a marketing world where segmenting, one-to-one messaging, and data-driven communications are the norm, it seems impossible to continue to be relevant with Ageless Marketing as the solution.


I want to be clear that I not against the term “Ageless.” it is an excellent way to describe that age is not a restriction for doing, interacting, or engaging in life. But, to leverage it to communicate how products and services will be solutions for these consumers is missing a big part of how to authentically understand them. 


In my experience in marketing numerous products and services to these consumers, a few key factors always came into consideration. At the core, age and demographics need to be considered. Next, consider their cohort. Many marketers stop there by only using milestones and stereotypes of the cohort to resonate with a specific group. How many times have “hippies” been the focal point to target Baby Boomers?


At BrandMETTLE, we have defined these as the Eight Intervening Factors for Marketing to Older Consumers. They are:



The Mature Brain


Physical Health

Emotional State

Life Events

Social Norms

Cohort Influences


Over the next few months on this blog, we will be breaking down each of these factors, explaining the science and research behind them, and discussing why they are relevant to your business.  We will share how to put them into practice in your messaging to this consumer group.


The Mature Brain: It’s A Changing Brain Not a Declining Brain

Coming at the end of July

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