The Dutch translation of the book Gray Ocean Strategy: How to exploit the biggest market ever with AgeWise marketing will be published in June. About the DNA of the older consumer based on scientific and practical research with the seven soft spots of the older consumer and the seven Gray Ocean marketing strategies. With a case for each soft spot, both in the book and here in the column.
Soft spot 4: posterity
The Swiss life feeling. A brand, an emotion that has been portrayed in a very clever way. But which we unfortunately also come across as images of life after retirement: now my time has come. It may be that society is individualized, but enjoying for seniors doesn’t just mean completely spoiling themselves and going on a cruise to the Bahamas, as the Swiss life feeling suggests.
What could be the influence of this individualization on the family relationships of the future? Are grandparents no longer looking after their grandchildren? Do parents no longer consider it important that there is good contact between grandfather and grandmother and the grandchildren? Yes, because caring for the next generations is simply a primal instinct.
For seniors, enjoyment is in very small things, and preferably with the next generations, with children and grandchildren.
This is about getting satisfaction from things you can do for others. To care for future generations. We see the phenomenon of generativity happening in our immediate environment every day. The grandmother reading the nursery, grandparents who watch out every Wednesday afternoon. Or in tourism with grandparents who go on holiday with the grandchildren for a few days. Or in financial services with savings and investment accounts for the grandchildren. Or with the charities that have devoted themselves to the theme of estate.
Erik Erikson was one of the first to come up with the term “generativity”. He described eight life stages from very young to very old, with generativity at a younger age involving the generation and birth of children. Or afterwards raising and caring for children. Or by transferring knowledge and standards and values. But as an adult, the seventh and second-to-last phase of life, generativity strongly emerges in line with the need for care. This does not only apply to grandchildren. Because see the enormous opportunities with older employees to transfer knowledge and skills to the younger employees. So whoever has the elderly has the future.
Case: Landal GreenParks
Landal GreenParks: Discover what green can do for young and old
Landal GreenParks is the largest provider of holiday parks in the Netherlands. 34% of all guests are 55 years or older, for Landal GreenParks the definition of the older consumer. Three-quarters of the over-55s go on holiday every year.
Which of the seven soft spots are relevant for Landal GreenParks?
Wander Groot, director Park & Product Development, says the following about this: “Several of the Seven Soft Spots are very recognizable to us. The most relevant for Landal GreenParks are Soft Spot 1: The Positive, Soft Spot 2: The Authentic, Soft Spot 7: The Simplicity and certainly Soft Spot 4: The Progeny. By adding the reunion bungalow to the range, we are responding strongly to this Soft Spot. This allows the whole family to enjoy the holiday at the same location, but with the necessary privacy. This entire family, the so-called extended family, ie grandparents, children and grandchildren, is an important market segment for us. The youngest generation therefore plays an important role for our seniors as customers. This has consequences, for example, for the layout of the holiday home, but also for the restaurant. “
By adding the reunion bungalow to the range, we are strongly responding to the soft spot the Progeny. This allows the whole family to enjoy the holiday at the same location, but with the necessary privacy.
What did you learn about the elderly from a marketing perspective and how do you respond to this? “We expect to approach the elderly market quite successfully from Landal GreenParks. However, the senior is also changing fast: higher educated, more affluent, more articulate. For us, this means getting to know the senior even better so that we can better tailor our value proposition to the individual customer. And that the senior therefore has the right experience with us. Because it is and remains a hugely important market segment for us. Focus on age style and not age alone. “