It is obvious the authors have done a great deal of research into the subject of ageing. If you have reached 50, then be prepared for the depression that sinks in as you realise from their words the deterioration of the body and mind which has already started and will accelerate as the years pass. Stroud and Walker spell it out in great detail. The reason these marketers are focusing on this population group is that most countries in the world are experiencing an elderly segment that is expanding fast. Singapore and Japan in the Asia-Pacific region are prime examples. While this will require social adaptation, it will inevitable demand that marketers address this segment which, in general, they have failed to do in the past. The authors mention flexibility, dexterity, strength and vision as areas where older people have problems. Once this group becomes a sizable segment, marketers will have to address these issues in their products and services. There is another important factor which is barely touched on in the book. Unlike earlier generations, many retire today with considerable wealth. Often these days, it is the parents who help their children financially to buy their first home.
This book would be a useful read for company executives and their marketing departments. There are opportunities to develop existing and new products for the ageing consumer and this review by Dick Stroud and Kim Walker should stimulate ideas. Kim Walker, the founder of Silver, has been knocking on doors for some years now trying to persuade manufacturers and marketers to look seriously at the 60+ market. The authors feel that CEO’s now recognise the changing demographics but note that few have any strategies in place to market to the ageing consumer.