Research into channel preferences and responsiveness to direct mail amongst the over 50's market.
There are over 17 million individuals aged over 50 living in the UK, though they are often treated as a single homogenous group. In an attempt to remedy this, Royal Mail compiled extensive data analysis of this audience to define a new segmentation, identifying many different sub-groups of this age demographic now available to be targeted with increasingly relevant products, services and information. Following this research Royal Mail identified a catagory of 'charmed' over 50's, a group of people who have profited form the 'four P's'; Prudence, Parents, Property & Pensions
To identify those segments within the over 50's age range, that are sufficiently distinct so as to warrant differing marketing strategies.
An optimal 21 segments were defined, providing strong discriminations both within and across age groups and formed according to key drivers such as; Age, Wealth, Household Composition, Presence of Children, Credit Risk and Channel Preference. From these segments, levels of affluence, channel preferences and responsiveness to DM (direct mail) were established, thus forming a basis of knowledge, regarding how best to target the different areas of this vast market. For example, Prosperous Pensioners were found to prefer remote (phone) methods of contact.
The key findings established are three broad age groups - prime of life (50-64 years), retirement years (65-74 years), and later life (75+ years); identifying the 'charmed generation' of individuals who have profited from the four P's and who are cash and asset-rich. There are over 21 different subsets of the over 50s, including wealthy empty nesters, credit hungry families, self-sufficient solos, hard-up households and pound-stretching pairs, with each group responding best to a different media channel varying from phone, online, direct mail or face-to-face marketing.
The application of this segmentation could be utilised in order to sample an existing base of 'good customers' in order to truly understand your customer needs and preferences, or alternatively, as a method of sourcing new areas of the population to target with specifically tailored marketing. No longer is the over 50's target population a case of one marketing message fits all.