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Field Reports

16 Aug, 2010 By: Jackie Jones Response


Older Consumers May Be Worth Marketers’ Dollar, Nielsen Says
By Jackie Jones

NEW YORK — Nielsen is challenging one of the advertising industry’s oldest beliefs — that consumers older than 50 aren’t marketable, saying changes in lifestyle sparked by new technology, as well as the massive and aging population of Baby Boomers, could make targeting this group now worth advertisers’ expense.

Marketers have long been obsessed with youth due to the belief that those between the ages of 18 and 49 haven’t yet committed to a brand, while older folks have and are less apt to be swayed by advertising to change their ways.

Nielsen is challenging those perceptions and researchers there said they have numbers on their side. Researchers believe consumers during the next decade will have fewer children, and that a rough economy will cause those younger consumers to spend less, leaving America with a much larger older population than ever before.

“There will be a huge number of people over the age of 65, 75 and 85 over the coming decade. We’ve never had a population this big this old before,” said Doug Anderson, Nielsen’s senior vice president of research and thought leadership. “This is not something that demographers and anthropologists have tons of models sitting around that they can talk about. We as a species have never had this many older people before. It’s new ground.”

Some marketers are taking notice. In May, NBC Universal and Procter & Gamble (P&G) launched a group of Web sites aimed at Baby Boomers covering a range of topics, including technology and health.

“With this property in particular, we’re enabling advertisers and brands to reach a powerful demographic with an annual spending power of $1 trillion,” Rich DelCore, director of branded entertainment at P&G, said in May.

What the older generation is spending its money on might surprise marketers as well, Nielsen said. Baby Boomers in 2010 account for about 38.5 percent of all dollars spent on consumer package-goods, 40 percent of customers paying for wireless services and 41 percent of consumers paying for Apple personal computers, to name a few, according to Nielsen.

“There isn’t a single media-content company that won’t face this,” said Alan Wurtzel, president of research and media development at NBC Universal, “and the same is true for mass marketers.”


QVC to Roll Out T-Commerce Application
By Jackie Jones

WEST CHESTER, Pa. — Home shopping network QVC, with the help of interactive TV company Ensequence, will roll out a T-commerce application in Comcast homes by early next year, enabling viewers to order products with just a few clicks of the remote.

QVC believes the application will result in cost savings and increased sales, since the new easy-to-use function removes viewer phone calls from the sales equation. “You can make the purchase quicker, so typically what you find is people make more purchases, and they buy more frequently,” said Jeff Siegel, vice president of sales at Ensequence.

Only Comcast homes with Enhanced Binary Interchange Format (EBIF) technology will have access to QVC’s shop-by-remote application. QVC is in about 98 million U.S. homes, and EBIF-enabled set-top boxes are in about 12 million homes, according to estimates.

Beginning with Comcast was a natural move for QVC since the cable operator is known to be a pacesetter in deploying EBIF, according to Siegel. However, he did add that the network would continue to look for partnerships with other operators.

“This is a solution they’re aggressively pursuing across multiple operators because it’s going to make the operator more money, and it’s good for the customer,” Siegel said.

Ensequence developed a version of a similar application for the Home Shopping Network (HSN) in 2008 called Shop by Remote, and has worked with QVC in the past to launch a T-commerce application for a beauty channel in the U.K.


DMA Appoints Kimmel as New CEO

By Jackie Jones

NEW YORK — The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) named Lawrence M. Kimmel as the new chief executive officer of the global trade organization of businesses and nonprofit multi-channel marketers.

The search for a new CEO was believed to be the most extensive in the DMA’s 93-year history and took six months, according to the DMA.

“DMA is enormously pleased that Larry Kimmel has agreed to serve as our next CEO,” DMA Board Chairman Steven Dapper said. “He will bring to DMA an extraordinary depth of global experience, a strong management capability and powerful insights into the evolving and exhilarating direct and digital marketplaces. We look forward to his leadership and strategic guidance to our staff, the Board and our vast membership.”

Kimmel, who started Aug. 2 at DMA’s New York headquarters, is the former chairman and CEO of Grey Direct Global Network, a direct and digital agency.

“This is an exciting time to be in marketing, yet it is also a period that demands far more innovation, collaboration and education,” Kimmel said. “As such, it will be rewarding to ensure that DMA members get every competitive advantage, and that the broader marketing community and consumers are well served by the critical activities of DMA’s Government Affairs group in Washington, D.C.”

Kimmel is looking forward to his future at the DMA. “Now that virtually all of marketing has become or is becoming ‘direct,’ it will also be exhilarating to work with the countless thought-leaders at DMA as we help lead the way for the next generation of even more effective, efficient marketing methodologies,” he said. “I consider myself extremely fortunate to be taking the helm of DMA at this exact time in history.”

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