I turned 54 this weekend and one of the conversations I ended up having with a fellow boomer was over favorite TV shows. I could rattle mine off easily: "The Good Wife," "Harry's Law," "The Big Bang Theory," "60 Minutes," "48 Hours Mystery," "Men of a Certain Age," "Glee," and "Criminal Minds." These are shows I deem worth recording, lest I'm tied up with something and can't see them at the time they air. And I'll watch almost anything on HGTV, though I rarely record it.
Well, it turns out I'm a a new target for advertisers. In fact, TV networks are charging advertisers MORE to reach boomers than the 18-49 year old group, considered traditionally the most coveted demographic. Why? Because boomers (47-65 this year) now control half of all U.S. consumer spending AND we watch a disproportionate amount of TV.
Our power extends to who is staring in shows as well. Consider Modern Family, showcasing Ed O'Neil as the patriarc, or Tom Selleck as the anchor for "Blue Bloods." And of course, let's not forget Kathy Bates as the "Harry" in "Harry's Law."
Network executives are handpicking talented "older" actors, then telling advertisers to pay attention because their fans (people like me), are willing to try new brands, take vacations, spend on our families, buy technology and postpone retirement. Ignore us at your peril.
According to Neilson, we watch an average of 170 hours a month, or about five hous a day. And most of us use DVRs and stream shows online. I absolutely believe that, judging form my own viewing patterns and those of many of my peers.
Last year, NBC's Universal did a study of what they called Alpha Boomers, 55-64, and determined they spend $1.8 trillion on food, cars, personal care and technology, furthering proving the point that boomers are a great target for many advertisers.
So, boomers, let's take advantage of our position now. Buy from companies that support the shows you like and complain to the network when you think we aren't well represented on shows. We have the power (which we acquired, btw, it wasn't given to us), so use it!
How about you? What are your favorite shows? Favorite sponsors of those shows?