‘Seniors do not buy products, but beautiful experiences’

What can marketers do with the book, what key insights does it provide?

Keehnen: “With this book, the marketer can understand much better what aging means and how that changes you as a consumer. With the conclusion that this requires a different type of marketing, the so-called agewise marketing. Based on the psychology of aging, the book deals with seven soft spots. These are 7 emotions that are significantly different in the elderly than in the young. And these also call for seven other marketing strategies. The Gray Ocean Model in the book gives concrete instructions on how to do this as a marketer. “

The book is full of interviews with marketers from major brands. What is their common opinion on older people’s marketing?

“The essence is customer knowledge, customer knowledge and more customer knowledge. So not based on all assumptions marketing companies, but based on knowledge. The essence of customer centricity with good market research is central. “

With this book, the marketer can understand much better what aging means and how that changes you as a consumer.

Elderly marketing is still in its infancy. Strange, because there are already so many seniors. What is holding back marketers?

“Certainly strange. 20 years ago I was the first to start with this subject in the Netherlands. At the time, only producers of age-related products, such as hearing aids, glasses and pharmaceuticals, were concerned with the elderly. But now it is realized that baby boomers also buy normal toilet paper and just drink coffee. In other words: manufacturers of timeless products are now also coming into the picture and marketers are aware that people over 60 are the largest market segment ever. In numbers, income and wealth. The lack of this awareness stopped them. “

Elderly people and Covid19, is there anything sensible to say about that?

“Scientific research shows that the five Maslow needs are independent of age. With the exception of one: security. The older, the more need for security. In my view, Covid 19 will lead to older consumers who are looking for even more certainty in their consumer behavior. Innovation is of course allowed, but it is offered by a trusted brand. Kruidvat’s rock-solid pay-off fits in very well with this: Always surprising, always beneficial! It combines security with surprise. “

What do you think is the biggest challenge for marketers in 2020?

“From diversity marketing, the profession that I teach at Erasmus University, marketers must realize that good segmentation is and remains essential. Don’t forget to focus on the largest market segment of the over-60s. Thinking from the customer’s point of view, you must come up with innovative one-to-one value propositions that are based on creating a so-called well-being experience. Because older consumers in particular do not buy products, but want good experiences. “

The Dutch translation of the book Gray Ocean Strategy can now be ordered via


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