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Getting Reacquainted with Older Shoppers

Getting Reacquainted with Older Shoppers

Scan any marketing report these days, and it’s all about Millennials, Millennials, Millennials. What are their challenges? What speaks to them? What do they want?

But supplement marketers would be wise to remember that Millennials aren’t the only game in town — Baby Boomers and Matures (ages 70-plus) are still worthy targets. Not only are these consumers the most likely of any age group to use supplements — CRN reports that 80 percent of US adults over age 55 do so[1] — but they’re also the age group that has increased its supplement usage the most, having grown 6 percent since 2016[2].

So let’s reframe and answer those age-old marketing questions…this time, for Boomers and Matures.

What are their challenges?

Baby Boomers may control 70 percent all disposable income in the US[3], but high healthcare costs are driving dollars away from doctors. In the last year alone, between one third and one half of people age 45 to 59 skipped on health care due to its cost[4]. Indeed, prevention is key for this group, especially as they see their parents face age-related health concerns.

Matures, on the other hand, are the ones dealing with these health issues. So supplements that appeal to their desire for proactivity in the face of age-related concerns by supporting a healthy circulatory system, or offering bone and joint support, will resonate.

What speaks to them?

Matures represent the group most likely to listen to their physician’s recommendations[5], so the fact that the medical community has embraced supplements in recent years only stands to further drive these shoppers to the supplement aisle. But Boomers are swayed by something a little different — they are most influenced by packaging and claims. And if a product is eco-friendly? All the better.

What do they want?

What these groups have in common is that they want safe, effective, and research-backed supplements with proven track records. And since research shows that one-third of the body’s digestive enzymes and possible capacity are gone by age 50 [6], marketers would be wise to design enzyme supplements targeted towards these populations.

The good news is that National Enzyme Company (NEC) offers a range of solutions for consumers of any age. BioCore AminoTap® PS may help Matures get more out of their limited diets, while the Serrazimes® systemic protease blend will assist Boomers with immunity and cardiovascular and musculoskeletal health.

Overall, both groups can benefit from products formulated with antioxidants, like NEC’s Enzymolic® Antioxidant Support, which can help fight free radicals.

The bottom line?

Though they seem to be getting all the attention lately, younger shoppers are just one portion of the supplement consumer base. Marketers who truly want to communicate with consumers and earn their business over the course of their lifetime need to keep the conversation going with older shoppers, as well.


[1] https://www.crnusa.org/sites/default/files/images/CRN-2017-ConsumerSurvey-4-page-highlights.pdf

[2] https://www.crnusa.org/sites/default/files/images/CRN-2017-ConsumerSurvey-4-page-highlights.pdf

[3] https://www.usnews.com/pubfiles/USNews_Market_Insights_Boomers2015.pdf

[4] https://www.forbes.com/sites/nextavenue/2018/03/27/boomers-and-gen-xers-skipping-health-care-due-to-cost/#443ba7515aa3

[5] NMI SORD 2015

[6] Improvement in protein utilization in nursing-home patients on tube feeding supplemented with an enzyme product derived from Aspergillus niger and Bromelain. Nutrition Vol 17, No 4, 2001 348-350.

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