What Persuades Older Consumers?

They’ve lived a lifetime of consumerism. Seen every marketing trick in the book. So what credence do older consumers place in celebrity endorsements and which media are they more likely to search for bargains?

The AdWeek/Harris poll has some interesting findings: The poll also found that the age of respondents played a factor in how persuasive they found different types of product hawkers.

  • Almost half of those aged 55+ (46%) say business leaders are most persuasive, compared with only 28% of those who are 18-34 years old.Harris Poll
  • One-fourth of those ages 18-34 (23%) say TV or movie stars are most persuasive, while only 15% of those ages 55+ feel the same way.
  • There is also a difference among those who are seen as least persuasive. Almost half of those ages 35-44 (45%) think former political figures are least persuasive when they endorse a product, compared with one-third of those ages 18-34 (33%).Harris Poll
  • When looking for the best bargains, different age groups have different ideas of where to look. Those 18-34 are more likely to say online ads (22%) and television commercials (17%) are the best places to go while those 35-44 years old go online (26%). The older one is, the more likely they are to use newspaper and magazine advertisements, as 24% of those 44-54 and one-third of those 55 and older (33%) say those are media most likely to help them find the best bargain.
  • Almost two-thirds of those aged 55 and older (64%) say they still read a daily newspaper almost every day. The younger one is, however, the less often they read newspapers. Just over two in five of those aged 45-54 (44%) read a paper almost every day as do 36% of those aged 35-44. But less than one quarter of those aged 18-34 (23%) say they read a newspaper almost every day while 17% in this age group say they never read a daily newspaper.

Harris Poll

Although these data are from the USA, the findings ring true for most of Asia. However, I suspect ‘Television and Movie stars’ would still command enormous influence in this part of the world. With 80% of all TV commercials in Japan being only 15 seconds in duration, brands most often turn to celebrities as a means of cut-through and to quickly impart the ‘character’ of the celeb to the brand concerned. In this post about Shiseido’s skin care targetted at 60+ women, the lead character is an extremely famous, 70-year-old star of the screen.

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