Like most others countries, older Chinese consumers perceive themselves younger than their actual age according to a new study. This supports the results of our SilverPoll conducted in 2009 across 5 APAC markets.
The survey among consumers above the age 50, was conducted across six cities in China. [Download here]. While almost 50 percent of the people surveyed were between the ages of 50 and 59, only about 33 percent perceived themselves as being that old. Overall, 52 percent of the total respondents perceived themselves to be younger than their actual age, among whom, about 20 percent perceived themselves to be at least 10 years younger and 6 percent had a self-perceived age that was at least 20 years younger than their life age.
Again, echoing one of Silvers’ mantra’s Professor Rui Yao of the University of Missouri said “This study shows that when marketing products to this demographic, it is wise to avoid saying they are for older people. Having a gray hair image, or using the term ‘silver’ isn’t going to be very well received by these consumers. Marketing professionals who hold the old belief that ‘the old man decays’ are challenged to re-evaluate and reposition the older consumer market. People live longer today. The ‘mid-life’ and ‘middle-age’ concepts are shifting.
They used to describe those in their 30s and now it appears that the 50s may be the new 30s. Marketers should use more energetic and youthful campaigns. If a product makes them feel younger, they will be more likely to use it.”
Another interesting result was that women were more likely to perceive themselves as younger as compared to men.
Nothing surprising from this research but it’s always good to get validation from academia.