This Just In: WSJ Reports Boomers Don't Identify as Seniors
November 13, 2015
By Tammy Sachs, CEO
On the front page of The Wall Street Journal today, their article "To Lure Baby Boomers, Senior Centers Try Rebranding" reported what most marketers and product developers don't get -- Boomers are not Seniors and they probably never will be.
The problem is, we live is an incredibly agist society where those over 50 are most likely to reject the stigma of terms like senior, elder and Aging in Place. What's that anyway? It sounds like someone is decomposing on a couch. Most marketers, regardless of their own age, don't quite get that Boomers are nothing like generations past that hit 50, 60 or approaching 70. They are not going to age but, rather grow. They are not going to be put in a box or a home, certainly not one called "senior." They are more likely to invent their home of the future or move into a place that "gets" who they are. Some will move into a community together. Remember communes?
While those over 75 may be just fine with the early bird special or assisted living, most under 75, not so much. They think that is for their parents.
Look at AARP's transition. Remember ElderHostel? It is now Road Scholar? Which would you rather tell friends and family about? We're even seeing movies that feature Boomers as sexy and hip. Stars like Susan Sarandon easily play a grandma or a sexy new wife. Boomers break the mold.
Further, longevity is the new black. Most people over 50 plan to live another quarter century and not in a rocking chair (more like on a motorcycle or sailboat.) The WSJ article reveals the new branding for a senior center in Rochester: 125 Live. Not everyone liked it. Wait a few years and add SoulCycle.