Rumor has it that there are old people out there with a lot of dough... the money kind. My circle of friends has a lot of dough of the cookie and bread kind. I might know some oldies of the money kind but they are doing one heck of a job of hiding that fact.
What I do know for certain is that almost everyone in the world, except us, thinks we have a lot of money to donate and/or buy products and services. How do I know this? I read newspapers, magazines for old people and I watch television. More than 30 years of experience in advertising and marketing has left me fascinated by what is called target marketing and we are that red dot in the center.
We're pretty easy to find because we are creatures of habit. We watch the news and read newspapers more than younger folks. We also watch Jeopardy which is my favorite example of targeting. Next time you watch Jeopardy, and I'm pretty sure you do, notice the commercials. They are for Geezers. If that's not bad enough, they've taken our favorite gray haired Canadian, Alex Trebek (also of Jeopardy) and made him a spokesman for Geezer life insurance. Oh Alex, you handsome, believable rascal.
No laughing. I ordered the kit. It turns out that you sure can get the insurance at a reasonable rate but it's in per thousand dollars of coverage and depends on your age at inception of the policy. Alex says the average funeral costs in our country are more than 8,000. At least in our house, we couldn't afford that level of coverage or the funeral.
This is the reason we are donating our bodies to science. There are no commercials for that. Yet. Give it time. I have a hunch this idea might catch on.
Please notice the OPB sponsors. Here's another gold mine for marketing to senior citizens. In general, we watch a lot of their programming because we like music, arts and programming like Masterpiece Theater, health issues, and information on the countries and peoples around the world. Though I don't know for certain, I would guess that Geezers play a huge role in the success of Public Television. Good for us, I say!
Every philanthropic organization on the planet targets us because sometimes, though I hate to admit it, we are easy touches. My grandmothers used to give money to an assortment of non-profit organizations. For every one she donated to, she received another ten requests from different folks wanting more money. Why? Those do-gooders often sell our information to others, thus increasing their income. In fact if you place a catalog order with certain companies, your mail box will be filled with buying opportunities within two weeks.
You can usually tell who sold you out by using different versions of your name when ordering. I tried this and was amazed at who sold Mrs. L Shaffer and who kept Linda Shaffer to themselves. Of course it helps if one of them misspells your name the first time you get something. Those stick out like a sore thumb. See how easily entertained I am?
This information about selling you out is sometimes available in print so small that you can't read it in most offers, whether they be televised, in print or on social media. Those privacy agreements they send us every year don't do much good if we don't respond but we're busy people because we're retired and too busy trying to play detective.
I am amazed that customer service moves like a slug on bark mulch but marketing is faster than Superman. If you want to get off mailing lists you can do it but it takes forever. At least you can get rid of online advertisers by unsubscribing to their mail. Of course that little word is not always easy to find either. Found this out the hard way by ordering a few things online and then being drowned with emails wanting more of my money.
There is an upside to this. If you are having a day when you're feeling sad and worthless because you're old, take heart. Half the folks on the planet would love to know you and get some of your money. They don't even care how much you have. They want you, just the way you are. :)
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