Tag Archives: Demographics

The Challenge: Marketing to both Happy and Grumpy

Yesterday, I talked a little bit about the trails and tribulations of having to market a product to a wide spectrum of people. Today, I’m going to begin to tackle a hypothetical project I’ve created for myself.

The Challenge:
  • Take the Apple iPad 2 [one of my favorite products in the world right now] and market it to a cynic as well as an innocent, demonstrating its value.

I’m thinking this is going to be a very multifaceted plan, so it will take up a few blog posts. I won’t harp on this daily [that is unless there is an amazing amount of demand for me to continue]. I want mix it up, but I feel this is a good way to work through some of my ideas, putting them into theoretical practice.

Target Audience:

The two men from the restaurant. Both are in their mid-sixties, have ample buying power, and both are still working. They are each full of energy and enjoy being out and about whether it be for business or pleasure. Neither is very technologically savvy, nor are they planning to join techies any time soon. They both have grandchildren who are all over the newest technology, but the two gentlemen have no interest. Just as in the restaurant, one is open to conversation–willing to take a minute to talk to someone, read something someone else has suggested, and enjoy time out in a public space with family. The second gentleman is more reserved. He doesn’t like to be bothered with frivolities, walks with purpose to avoid others, and always has a task to accomplish.

First Steps:

We now know who I’m going after. These two guys fit the bill of a supposedly hopeless situation from the stand point of getting them to buy new technology. However, they just don’t know how beneficial it can be. They aren’t informed as to how the iPad 2 can help them in their everyday life. Thus, how do I even start to inform these people about this amazing product. I want a new devotion to older demographics. All of Apple’s marketing seems to focus on young, hip people. People who are artsy, creatives, even hippies, but the ipad 2 spans greater demographics. I would implement a new campaign to build off the current ones in place. Using older actors in commercials would be a simple way to begin accomplishing my goal. The commercials would highlight the features [ie. pinch to zoom, multitasking gestures, facetime] in a way that would communicate the benefits an iPad 2 has for older people. Taking Apple’s advertising budget into account, adding a few more actors and having a few more spots would not break the bank.


The next installment will address when and how these commercials will be presented, and how I would go about implementing this idea.



Restauranting: The People Who Eat Out

While I’ve been job hunting, I’ve been paying the bills with a gig at a breakfast restaurant. I worked there in high school, and the GM was a server back then and was gracious enough to hire me on. While I’m thankful for the income and the ability to pay my bills, working in a restaurant is incredible motivation to get a real job [I don’t mean to demean it, but I’d rather be doing something else]. Despite this, it is highly entertaining.

I spend a lot of time at the front of the restaurant, and I get to see all the different types of people walking in and out. Yesterday, I found myself laughing at the innocence of the elderly, as well as amazed at the rudeness of people. All the while, I’m thinking to myself…”I have to market products/services that could potentially cover this spectrum?” First, the old man who made me laugh simply responded to my wishing him a good day with “Take care of your health.” Now, the response normally is ‘you too’ [see Brian Regan], however, his response gave me pause. I’m sure he was just struggling to come up with the stereotypical, appropriate response, but I felt he was genuine. Thus, there are people who will openly listen to what you have to say, and give a response either positively or negatively. Basically, these people could be classified as well-intentioned–at least superficially. It is easy to market to this demographic because you can easily ensnare them, and get your message across without much of a barrier. Wonderful! However, the other group is a little tougher.

An apt portrayal of the customers.

The second person did not enjoy his time at the restaurant and his response to how was everything today was, “We won’t be back, does that answer your question?” I was a bit taken aback. I dug a little more to find the root of the issue and what it boiled down to was a miscommunication. Think of the telephone game you played back in grade school. The message gets jumbled the more times it is re-communicated. The server didn’t quite get it, the kitchen tweaked it more, and the end result was an unhappy customer. Instead of understanding it wasn’t necessarily the end of the world [like he made it sound] he became irate, demanded things, and got grumpy. This person is a little more difficult to market too, unless of course you’re trying to sell Oscar the Grouch. They may filter information, avoid it, or totally disregard it–much higher barriers to mindshare.

If you can market something upbeat, in your face, and exciting to a grinch, I feel you are well on your way to becoming a true marketing guru.


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