When we hear the term “the silver economy”, some of us think of gold and silver and wonder what it has to do with us. But the “silver economy” is the name given to the current (and continuing) situation that we as consumers find ourselves in.
There are more older people in the world today than ever and those of us who are “silver” are having much more of an impact on the economy that we realize. What are some of the ways that we as consumers matter and why?
What makes up the silver economy?
As the world’s population increases in age, new technologies, markets, products and services are being created to cater to those of us who are older, those of us who make up the silver economy. For the first time in U.S. history, in approximately 15 years, people over the age of 65 will be larger than people under the age of 18. Smart companies are beginning to realize this and to start their marketing of services specifically for us.
What areas of life are affected?
Seniors are already the wealthiest age group in the world, along with people ages 45-64 and we have the largest purchasing power. Our incomes are taken into account by companies, which drives the marketing. This includes products and services designed for “aging well”, as well as niches such as clothing sales and cosmetics. Also for one of the first times in history, there is a broad understanding that women make up a large part of this group and have expendable income. Other markets that offer age specific services/products or who are actively marketing to those of us who compose the ‘silver economy’ (and who might even be specifically marketed towards women) are:
- Real Estate
- “Aging well” products – such as vitamins, supplements, organic foods
- Financial sector
- Transportation (trains, planes and automobiles)
- Elder care
How to use your power as a consumer?
Buy/do the things that make you happier in your older years
You’ve worked hard for the life you have now. Too many of us wait for that vacation or “dream” for ourselves or our families.. If you have the means, make it happen.
Spend your money with the companies you want to have your money
Many people are realizing the power of shopping locally, supporting the companies they feel are worthy.
Consider investing wisely/appropriately
Whether it be in the market, in real estate or in a the traditional ways, putting aside something for your future or for your family is the wisest.
Make your voice heard
If there are causes that you support, making your voice heard and using your power as a demographic is a powerful movement for future change.
While many of us may not be “wealthy”, as a population we do have the largest and strongest buying power of all of the age groups. It’s time to make good use of what we have worked for. For more in-depth information about the silver economy, check out this article.
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