I subscribe to dozens of email marketing lists for research purposes, and have done for some years. One thing that still surprises me is that, as far as content goes, I’m largely ignored at best. You see, I’m over 55 years of age.
It seems very odd as, for the first time in my life, I have a fair bit of disposable income. I assumed I would be targeted, but most marketing emails miss me by some distance. One example is clothes. It would appear there are no clothing models over 35 years. I’m grey-haired and a little overweight, so how can I see what I will look like in a suit when the model is slim, athletic and has dark hair?
Every so often I’ll get a marketing email for upright chairs, or a powered one, and these often show people 30 years older than me. They all look happy, perhaps because they are wearing bedroom slippers. If I am a typical grumpy old man, it’s because of badly targeted marketing emails.
My first computer used a command line interface and so does my current laptop as I’ve installed Ubuntu on for a bit of fun. So why do I get marketing emails for IT advice for seniors? I would prefer being ignored to being patronised. I’m sure George Clooney would be miffed at that as well.
Irritate subscribers to your email marketing list by patronising them and they will become ex subscribers. However, it does not mean that you should ignore age as a demographic despite the variations in the desires and needs of the age range.
The fact that few marketing emails to the over 55s are so badly targeted leaves a gap in the market. Ironically, you can’t use their age as the sole criterion. The way to sell to them is as individuals. Don’t treat them as grandparents so much as a group that has high disposable income, possibly to spend on young children. You will have realised that you need to segment your email marketing lists to find what they want. Just don’t offer me Werther’s Originals.