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Boomer Women ARE the Ultimate Consumer

Marketers Beware! Ignoring Boomer women could be detrimental to your bottom line.  Times of patronizing ads and ignorance has long gone. These are huge and costly mistakes, especially in categories where the male buyer is less influential than conventional wisdom suggests.

In particular, the 40+ female, warrants your attention. There are 80 million Boomers working their way through society as well as the consumer marketplace. Take note, because women comprise the majority, both today and in the future. You may ask, ‘Why are these women so important?’ In their book, BOOM:Marketing to the Ultimate Power Consumer-The Baby Boomer Woman, Mary Brown & Carol Osborn answer your question. Just look at what they found:

  • In the next decade, women will control two-thirds of the of the consumer wealth in the U.S., influencing as much as 85% of the $2.1 trillion dollars that Boomers spend on consumer goods and services.
  • Eight out of ten Boomers say that they do not intend to retire, with an estimated 52% growth in the category of women 55+ projected in the U.S. workforce by 2010.
  • Disposable incomes are also highest for women aged 45-54.
  • Not only will Boomer women continue to earn income by working, they’ll also manage inheritance windfalls from their parents and husbands, who, (the latter), they will outlive by 6-9 years on the average.
  • Even in traditionally male-dominated categories, women are responsible for more than half of the purchase decisions. Women make 80% of home improvement decisions, buy 65% of all new vehicles, and spend more than $55 billion dollars on consumer electronics, an industry that generates $96 billion in annual sales.
  • In 2004, women aged 35-54 represented the highest proportion of web surfers compared with male Boomers.
  • Catalog marketers estimate that 70% of all online purchases are made by women, the majority of whom are Boomers.
  • The 6.7 million companies owned by women account for 30% of all U.S. small business, with this sub-segment skewing heavily towards women 35-54.

Also, don’t forget that Boomer women have an age range of 18 years. This means that they live different lives. But, as a whole, they have been overlooked by male-focused marketers. The 40+ female has become a potent force in consumer purchasing, positioning herself as a indispensible market opportunity. Industries, such as travel, automobiles, real estate and remodeling, should not be assumed to be under the umbrella of male decision-making. Women are asserting their influence  in the purchasing process.



Stephanie Holland is President and Executive Creative Director for Holland + Holland Advertising, Birmingham, Alabama. Working in an industry that is dominated by men, she is one of only 3% of the female creative directors in the country. Stephanie works mostly with male advertisers, helping them successfully market to women. Subscribe to She-conomy by Email

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