Life Part 2
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Boomers needing a better legacy. a major driver of the social capital market as it evolves.

Boomers needing a better legacy. a major driver of the social capital market as it evolves.

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    Life Part 2 Life Part 2 Presentation Transcript

    • Primetime: Baby Boomers at Midlife and Beyond Greg O’Neill, PhD Director National Academy on an Aging Society www.agingsociety.org
    • The “Boomer Consumer” 5/13/09
    • Boom and Bust in the Next 10 Years 5/13/09
    • Primetime for Boomers
      • Boomers – age 45-54 – have the highest pre-tax household income and highest household spending of any age group.
      • Boomers spend $2 trillion per year on consumer goods and services.
      • In the 1990s, boomers accounted for 50% of all U.S. consumer spending!
      • Boomers’ poverty rate is 7.3%—lowest of all age groups.
      • Sources: MetLife Mature Market Institute; Consumer Expenditure Survey, McKinsey Global Institute
      5/13/09
    • “24”? More Like 48
      • NBC’s median viewer is 49, ABC’s 48, and CBS’s is 50-plus.
      • Median viewer age for 2007-08 programs:
        • ABC: Lost (44); Ugly Betty (50); Dancing with the Stars (54);
        • CBS: CSI Miami (52); 60 Minutes (60)
        • NBC: Deal or No Deal (54); The Office (38)
        • Fox: American Idol (42); “24” (48)
        • CW: America’s Next Top Model (28)
      5/13/09
    • Fifty on Facebook? 5/13/09
      • 10% of Twitter users are between ages 55 to 64, nearly the same amount as those between 18 and 24 (10.6%)
      • 5.2% are 65 or older
      • Source: comScore, March 2009
      ? = 5/13/09
    • The New Shade of Gray
      • Tomorrow’s generation of older adults is different from yesterday’s — and even today’s older adults — in ways other than just demographic size…
      5/13/09
    • The New Shade of Gray
      • Higher levels of formal education
      • More accumulated wealth
      • Women in the labor force and two-earner (and dual pension) families
      • Higher percentage of “retired” people who continue to work
      • Not just living longer, but more healthy, disability-free longevity
      • More racial and ethnic diversity
      5/13/09
    • The New “Middle Ages”
      • The Extension of Midlife (30’s – late 70’s)
        • Longer Working Lives
            • Virtue and necessity
        • Healthy and Active Lives
            • Unlikely to disengage from lifelong interests and activities
        • Complex Family Lives
            • Midlife family roles and relationships will likely extend beyond the middle years (due to later parenthood; remarriage; boomers’ parents longevity)
      5/13/09
    • The Age Disconnect
      • Boomers over 50, on average, feel 7 to 12 years younger than they are
      • Boomers define “over the hill” as over 80
        • But young adults (Generation X and Millennials) say 57 is “over the hill”!
      • Sources: AARP, Boomer Project
      5/13/09
    • Old Rules No Longer Apply
      • For the last 50 years, age was a good marker for life stage
      • But boomers have diverged from the linear life stage path
      • Their cyclical lives mean age provides few clues as to their life stage
      5/13/09
    • Shades of Gray
      • Question: Which of these descriptors would you
      • say relate to your life right now?
      • Parent 50%
      • Empty Nester 73%
      • Grandparent 41%
      • Caregiver 28%
      • Retired 26%
      • New Job 17%
      • Child in College 20%
      • Child at Home 27%
      • Source: Boomer Project National Study, 2004
      5/13/09
    • Life Stage, Not Age
      • Adult life stages that we must recognize, besides work and retirement:
        • Single (never-married, divorced, widowed)
            • One-third of the boomer cohort! (13%, 16%, 3%)
        • Caregiving
            • 34 percent of boomers reported caring for an older parent in 2001, compared to 26 percent in 1998
        • Grandparent
            • Average age of a first-time grandparent is 48. An average 30 years of grandparenting ahead of them!
        • Source: AARP 1999; 2003
      5/13/09
    • The Four Life Stages
      • Many developmental psychologists believe that people go through four life stages:
        • Youth: acquire basic physical, intellectual, emotional, and social skills
        • Young adult: focus on social and vocational needs, i.e. “becoming someone.”
        • Middle Age: focus shifts towards self-actualization, i.e., “being someone”
        • Senior: quest for reconciliation and legacy
      5/13/09
    • The New Consumer Majority
      • The boomer generation is now in life’s third quarter—middle age
        • Less focus on material things and more on “experiences”
        • Quest for balance, purpose, and life meaning
        • Reality begins to moderate idealism
        • Legacy aspirations emerge
        • More autonomous, less influenced by peers
        • Source: Ageless Marketing, 2003
      5/13/09
    • Emotion, Motivation, and Aging
      • Research shows that older adults recall emotional narrative in stories better than rational facts.
      • In fact, older adults typically recall twice as many of the emotional components of a story than younger adults.
      5/13/09
    • Be Positive!
      • The brain begins to ignore negative concepts, images, and words as we age.
      • MRI studies show older and younger adults have similar brain activity when viewing positive images.
      • Focus on the positive linked to longer lives
      5/13/09
    • The Mature Mind
      • “ Developmental Intelligence” includes 3 types of thinking that typically improve after age 50:
        • Relativistic: knowledge is relative/contextual, not absolute
        • Dualistic: ability to frame opposing views
        • Systemic: “big picture” thinking
        • Source: The Mature Mind, 2005
      5/13/09
    • Boomers: United
      • Authenticity
      • Self-improvement, reinvention
      • New collectives (physical, social, virtual) to meet individual needs and mitigate individual risks
      • Health, wholeness, wellness
      • Meaning and purpose
      5/13/09
      • “In most other industries, if a business found an audience segment that huge and underserved, and decided to target them, they’d be lauded as forward-thinking.” Source: Network executive quoted in “Nielsen Finds Audiences are Aging: 55-plus Age Bracket is Fastest-Growing Demo.” Variety, 8/29/08.
      5/13/09