“TVjust doesn’t work anymore. Too many eyeballs are on digital devices now.” Those of us who continue to market successfully on television are relentlessly confronted with this “truth,” yet our experience has been that
TV is still the biggest driver of impressions, provides a lift to
all marketing channels, and — given the right target — can
deliver enormously successful results.
The operative words in that previous sentence: right target.
It may be true that for the youngest generations, digital
video tends to be a replacement for TV. However, Baby
Boomers — those born between 1946 and 1964 — tend to
add digital on top of television viewing. After all, they grew
up with TV — it’s practically part of their DNA.
Here are some relevant stats, according to eMarketer:
; Boomers watch 40-50 hours of TV per week.
; Overall, 196.3 million U.S. adults will watch pay TV
(cable, satellite, or telco).
; The number of U.S. pay-TV viewers ages 55 and older
will continue to rise in the coming years while every
other age group users will decline.
So, Boomers most definitely still watch TV. What’s more,
they also are on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Yes, that’s
right: you can reach them on multiple platforms and multi-
ple times. Something else about those Boomers: they have
money. According to a 2017 study by Tiburon Strategic Ad-
visors, “Families amassed $79 trillion in net worth in 2014,
the majority of which went straight to Baby Boomers, who
already own homes and make up 75 percent of the market
(for financial advisors).”
Which is why it probably shouldn’t be surprising that one
recent campaign skewed higher than anticipated — 55-plus.
But, hey, success is success, right? What’s more, that same
campaign translated to an ROI-driven Facebook campaign
that delivered a higher ROI than TV reaching a much
With all that said, there is no argument
that we are in an omnichannel arena now,
which presents a wealth of challenges. You
are not alone if you find yourself struggling to
answer questions like:
; DO WE HAVE THE NECESSARY TALENT,
TECHNOLOGY, AND PROCESS IN PLACE?
Your team needs to include experi-
enced DRTV marketers, as well as those who speak
“digital” as a second language. You must leverage the
best technology available to track your results so you
can manage your campaign to them. Campaign man-
agement must be an integral part of the overall process,
which begins with market analysis and modeling and
continues through fulfillment, retention, and remar-
; DO WE HAVE THE RIGHT STRATEGY LAID OUT? This is the
million- (or multi-million) dollar question, and one
that you never know the exact answer to until the results are in. However, a smart, strategic testing strategy
will help you refine your initial strategy for optimal
; ARE WE ABLE TO EFFICIENTLY EXECUTE THAT STRATEGY?
Be brutally honest with yourself. If you don’t have the
capacity or expertise to execute a comprehensive direct sales campaign strategy, do not try to learn on the
job. Trial and error is expensive, and simple mistakes
or oversights due to lack of experience can effectively
hamstring a campaign.
; ARE WE CLEAR ON WHICH PLATFORMS WILL BEST REACH
OUR TARGET AUDIENCE? Don’t rely on your gut. Seek
out insights from those who live in the world of demographics and psychographics, and then test, test, test.
; DO WE HAVE CONFIDENCE IN THE ATTRIBUTION MODEL
WE’RE USING AS A BASIS FOR DECISION-MAKING? Simply
put: garbage in, garbage out. If you can’t trust your
data — maybe because your systems aren’t specifically
designed to measure the many variables in direct response — then you can’t use your data to make decisions.
But wait, there’s more! How does your customer retention
strategy fit into your overall media plan? It’s well documented
that it’s cheaper to keep an existing customer than to acquire
a new one, so have you given just as much thought to reten-
tion as acquisition? Money spent here might
be a better play than funding a lot of digital
media just because you feel you should.
We all know you have to be highly strategic about where you spend your media dollars
to get the most bang for your buck. Right
now, go where the eyeballs and the dollars
belong to the same people: go for the Boomers — and do it on TV.
Bank on the Boomers
BY BARBARA KERRY