Women over 40 invisible to marketers

  • Plenty of brands actively target millennials and senior citizens, but one age group seems to be nearly invisible when it comes advertising: women over 40.
  • A survey more than 500 women over the age of 40 across a variety of U.S.revealed that 64 percent of women feel brands systematically underestimate her spending power; 80 percent feel brands systematically underestimate her intelligence; and 84 percent feel brands systematically overestimate her preoccupation with her physical appearance.
  • Women in their 40s felt sexier, stronger and more powerful than ever before and they don’t want to be 25 again.
  • 76 percent feel brands play a negative role in the perception of women over 40 and 80 percent feel brands perpetuate negative gender stereotypes.

This group strongly believes – nine out of 10 – that brands should play a positive role debunking gender stereotypes. [inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=””]Eight out of 10 women in the survey said brands should play a role in advancing gender equality and seven out of 10 said brands should advance women’s issues.[/inlinetweet]

This shows that these women believe in brands and the power of brands. They’re not walking away from advertisers.

“Brands have to start speaking to this group or they’re fools,”

[inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=””]It’s not just food and the weekly grocery shop that women are responsible for. They also have an effect on big purchase decisions like cars and technology[/inlinetweet]. And while women do buy for themselves, they also influence decision-making for the whole family and are often the key purchase maker.”

Indeed, 96 per cent are solely or jointly responsible for big spending decisions. [inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=””]Women over 40 are 38 per cent more likely than those younger to be influential in buying a new car, 39 per cent more likely to buy large appliances for the home and 21 per cent more likely to make decisions about TVs, stereos and computers[/inlinetweet]

Here are some tips for marketers from Fancy on reaching women ages 40 and up:

1. Include her. Make sure to put women 40+ in castings and show them in roles where they wouldn’t usually be shown. This is a really powerful group which deserves to be represented more accurately.

2. Take a stand. Use your power and might to move the cultural needle forward for women. Take a stand on issues that benefit women – not just in your advertising, but in the way you conduct business overall.

3. Respect her.  For the funny, curious, intelligent woman she is, and the life-stage she’s living. Don’t assume she wants to be 25, chances are she’s feeling pretty damn good already.

4. Recognize the diversity within the group. She could have a toddler or a college student. Or no kids. She could be running a company, or starting her second act. It goes on. There is no stereotype.

5. Be honest. Women over 40 have seen a lot and done a lot. You can’t connect with fakeness and bullshit.

About richmeyer

Rich is a passionate marketer who is able to quickly understand what turns a prospect into a customer. He challenges the status quo and always asks "what can we do better"? He knows how to take analytics and turn them into opportunities and he is a great communicator.

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