Effective Marketing Strategies for the Senior Market

The senior market, people over the age of 55, in the United States is the fastest and largest growing segment of the American population. Senior citizens for the most part are educated, intelligent, and certainly experienced. They also control a substantial percentage of the wealth in this country. Consequently, it makes good business sense to explore opportunities in which to service the needs of these people.

However, many of those who try to enter this market say that they are frustrated and disappointed with the results of their efforts. Perhaps, their experience would be much better and more productive if they took a moment to examine the methodology by which they are trying to gain entry into it!

If ever there was a time and place where the old cliché: ”Keep it simple stupid” is appropriate, it is in this environment. That does not translate into “talking down” to seniors, or oversimplifying the information because they “can’t get it!” What it does mean is that whatever your message may be about your product or service; make the presentation both clear and simple.

The sales people who enjoy the greatest success in this market are those who first are able to gain the trust of these buyers. Now that may seem to be self evident, but the experience of those who fail to market successfully to seniors is that they are unable to gain their confidence and trust. Gaining that trust, however, is not easy. Why?

Gaining the confidence and trust of senior citizens is a process, not a one shot deal. That being the case, one of the most effective methods of securing that trust is through a newsletter! Newsletters containing useful, timely and valuable information that the senior citizen can use will go a long way toward building a relationship that ultimately will lead to sales to these prospects. Effective newsletters to senior citizens usually deal with issues that are important to them, such as health, quality of life, preservation of assets through financial planning and preparing wills and trusts that accomplish this purpose, etc. These are a few simple examples of the things that will enable you to successfully penetrate their usual resistance to sales people!

The sales person that is able to gain the trust and confidence of the senior buyer is rewarded with referrals to other seniors. These endorsements are so important to create an endless chain of new prospects.

The biggest and perhaps most critical mistake a sales person can make about senior prospects is that they “don’t understand advertising or complex issues.” Quite the opposite is true. What they don’t want is to be “dazzled”; they want it clear and simple. Furthermore, they refuse to be pushed into buying something until they have reviewed it carefully, and since most of them have lots of time to read every word of every brochure or ad, you can be sure that they do know what they want, why they want it and what they will be willing to spend to obtain it!

Conclusion: If you really want to be successful selling to the senior market, you will have to make a careful analysis of your selling techniques and probably modify or eliminate some aspects of your presentation. You will also have to invest some time and money in those things that will engender their trust and confidence, most importantly a newsletter! If you make this investment, the rewards will be substantial.