Don't You Dare Call Them Old

Mortgage and Lending with Amerisave Mortgage Company

Don't You Dare Call Them Old!

Don't You Dare Call Them "Old"
Baby boomers and silver surfers are still rockin' online.

Many marketers, particularly online, concentrate on reaching younger users. But that could be a multibillion-dollar mistake. Overall, older Americans make up the most affluent segment of the US population. And they are online.

"Internet usage by baby boomers-and over-60s-is projected to continue rising well into the future," says Paul Verna, eMarketer Senior Analyst and author of the new report, Baby Boomers and Silver Surfers: Two Generations Online. "Coupled with the discretionary income they have at hand, this creates an irresistible opportunity for online marketers."
eMarketer projects that, over the next five years, the number of US baby boomers who use the Internet at least once a month will grow by more than 5 million, from 58.2 million in 2006 to 63.7 million in 2011.

"Baby boomers are diverse, notoriously difficult to pigeonhole and sometimes overlooked by marketers, who are generally more interested in catering to younger and more active consumers of goods, services and media," says Mr. Verna. "But boomers wield enormous economic clout and are increasingly turning to online and mobile channels for a wide variety of needs, including e-commerce, financial services, travel, entertainment, health and wellness information, news and user-generated content."
Silver surfers, or over-60s, are also a large segment of the US Internet population, growing from 17.7 million Internet users in 2006 to 25.3 million by 2011.

"Silver surfers-also known as ‘the silent generation'-are also typically passed over by online marketers because most of them reached retirement age before computers and broadband access became ubiquitous in homes and offices, so their online habits are not as ingrained as those of their younger counterparts," says Mr. Verna. "Nevertheless, their spending power and growing presence online should serve as a wake-up call to marketers who might have their sights set elsewhere."

Over-60s may not be as numerous or influential online as younger generations, but they are determined to use the Web to further a broad range of interests, hobbies and professions.
"And what no marketer should forget," says Mr. Verna, "is that these two demographic groups have money to spend-lots of it."

Taking boomers as an example, The Conference Board found that boomers, on average, have more discretionary income than any other segment of the US population-over $24,000 a year per household.

"To focus on younger demographics at the exclusion of boomers and over-60s, as some marketers have done, is to miss a potentially huge opportunity to tap into a large, vibrant, diverse and fast-growing segment of the US Internet population," says Mr. Verna.

Comments (10)

Betina Foreman
WJK Realty - Austin, TX
Realtor, C.N.E., with WJK REALTY

Don't forget the youngest Baby Boomers are forty somethings now. We are a vibrant an active and diverse group. We are hiking, traveling, biking, running, sailing and yes surfing into our golden years. There are more of us on-line than you think! Thanks for the post!


Sep 18, 2008 04:55 AM
Steven L. Smith
King of the House Home Inspection, Inc. - Bellingham, WA
Bellingham WA Home Inspector

When I was in radio marketing, years back, everyone wanted to reach the 25 to 54 demographic. They seemed old to me. Now I am two years beyond the top end.

Sep 18, 2008 04:55 AM

Betty, You are absolutely right.  Everyone these days tend to be glued to a computer monitor.  Thank you for your comments.

Sep 18, 2008 10:33 AM
Elrico L. Hurley


I apologize for the misspell of your name.  I am very new to Active Rain...and being in such a rush to respond, I inadvertantly called you betty instead of betina.

Sep 18, 2008 10:35 AM


Don't worry...I'll be glad to market to you.  What did you say your address and phone number was? :)

Sep 18, 2008 10:37 AM
Charlie Harden
Columbia, SC

Elrico, did you know you can go back and edit a comment, or delete it, also can do with a post.  Just FYI so Betina doesn't come after you.  I appreciate your post.  Very good information to keep in mind, so you will overlook no one that comes to you for real estate assistance.

Sep 18, 2008 11:21 AM
Nance Burdette
Keller Williams Realty Partners - Spartanburg, SC

Congratulations...and Welcome on signing as a new member of ActiveRain. Being a new member myself going on my fourth week and only posting a few blogs so far, I truly see the awsome advantage that this truly can be; (and it's fun) and only the beginning of a healthy and wealthy relationship of abundant professionals. Everyone has been so very kind. And so much to read!!! Hope to see your blogs in the future.   Best of Luck to all of us,  Nance

Sep 18, 2008 01:09 PM
Sasha Miletic - Windsor Real Estate
RE/MAX Preferred Realty Ltd. - Windsor, ON

Hi Elrico, Welcome to AR, Be a Blogholic and start writing your own blog soon on AR. All the best for your RE business. This is the right place for customers, friends, realtionships etc.

Best - Sash 

PS: FREE blog traffic strategy video...Hope this will help you... click here

Sep 19, 2008 12:38 AM
Charles Stallions
Charles Stallions Real Estate Services - Pensacola, FL
850-476-4494 - Pensacola, Pace or Gulf Breeze, Fl.

Here Here, who said  50 is todays 30. Somewhere I read that Baby Boomers control like 50 % of the wealth. That is probably why Realtors are getting into SRES now.

Sep 22, 2008 05:45 AM
Fred Griffin Florida Real Estate
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

We invite you back to ActiveRain!

    Much has changed since your last visit to ActiveRain.  I encourage you to take another look at the website. 

    Surf some blogs, leave some comments.  Better yet, post a Blog.

    Best to you!

Nov 30, 2015 12:20 PM