Over-50s in Australia and New Zealand have the highest levels of wealth and disposable income – but a staggering 94% of them dislike the way organisations and marketers communicate with them. So claims a recent report from WPP AUNZ entitled “Secrets & Lies – Ageless and Booming”. It also reveals that fewer than one on 20 briefs from marketers specifically target this age group. The report notes: “Ageing is poorly understood, particularly by business and marketers who largely ignore or misfire with this audience. Ageing is a pejorative and older people are rarely seen as ideal consumers. The fallacy is that they can’t do tech. They’re not cool. They’re frail. Dull. Sick. They’ve retired from work and shut the door on meaningful life. They have no aspirations. They’re boring, unattractive and irrelevant. None of this is true.” Among the report’s suggestions are (reflecting the mantra of this Association) to recognise over-50s are not a homogenous group. It also urges its audience to “reflect the optimism and vibrancy of the over 50s audience” and suggests they review their communications to ensure they’re connecting with an audience that’s gearing up not slowing down. “Get funny, charming, quirky, disarming, honest, interesting and energetic when communicating to this audience. Don’t remove the sexy. Beige gets you nowhere with audiences under 50 so why would it work with the ageless? Most importantly, find new language. Invent new words. Retirement? Why not Encore? Or Next Act? Or Life 2.0? Get busy creating a new vocabulary because the brands that do will win a large and entirely new fan base.”