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Want to Reach Affluent Consumers? Here’s How

May 1st, 2013 ::

By Rieva Lesonsky

If you’re trying to reach affluent consumers, what marketing and advertising venues work best? The newest Shullman Research Center “Survey of the Affluent,” reported in MediaPost, has some insights. The study looked at 6.7 million U.S. adults with household incomes of $250,000 or more. These high-income consumers account for just 3 percent of the U.S. population. Of these, 40 percent (3.1 million) are age 35 to 54; 31 percent (2 million) are age 55 and up; and 23 percent (1.6 million) are under 35.

No matter what the age group, Shullman found, these high-income consumers are devoted to their electronic devices and apps, and are open to advertising in almost any venue. Interestingly, when consumers were asked where they were most likely to see or hear ads that sparked some interest or high interest in their daily life, health clubs/gyms ranked at the top of the list. This was especially true for the under-35 age category, 85 percent of whom saw or heard ads in health clubs that interested them.

Next came magazines, which ranked second for all age groups. However, if you want to reach under-35 affluents, you’d best not advertise in the newspaper. While newspapers ranked third in effectiveness for the 35-to-54 and 55-plus age groups, they were the least effective means of reaching the under-35 category. Television ranked fourth in effectiveness overall and works well for all age groups.

If you’re specifically targeting under-35s, advertising in bus stops, subway stations and train stations works best; 89 percent of this age group said this advertising interested them. Looking to reach the 55-and-over club? Focus on magazines and newspapers.

When asked what type of electronic device they would keep if they could only keep one, the majority (58 percent) of these very-high-income consumers chose their smartphone. Even among the age 55-plus group, 58 percent voted for the smartphone; among the 35-to-54 group, 63 percent did. Tablets came in second, chosen by 22 percent overall.

Older consumers were more likely to use weather, e-reader, GPS/directions/maps, business and finance apps on their smartphones. Younger users were more likely to have social networking apps on their smartphones.

What do these results mean for your business?

  • Tailor your advertising to your target age group. Traditional media still work best for the older consumers, while younger consumers are more open to ads in less traditional venues such as out-of-home and health club ads.
  • Don’t stereotype. Among the very affluent, the oldest age group is equally devoted to its mobile devices as the youngest age group. Purchasing ads on business, finance or weather apps is a good way to reach these users.
  • Keep your eye on tablets. Although they’re not considered as essential as smartphones, they are rising quickly, with more than one-third of under-35 affluents indicating plans to buy a tablet in the next 12 months.

Image by Flickr user DonkeyHotey (Creative Commons)


The views expressed here are the author's alone and not those of Network Solutions or its partners.

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