A new survey of 196 industry professionals conducted by organizers of Vitafoods Europe indicates that Baby Boomers—people currently between the ages of 49 and 72—are likely to continue to “set the agenda” in the nutraceuticals industry for at least the next 10 years. Although many industry groups and dietary supplement companies have been tailoring their marketing strategies toward the Millennial cohort (aged 25-35), Baby Boomers are actually the most important consumer demographic, according to the report. Healthy aging, in particular, continues to be a key category for companies hoping to attract Baby Boomer business.
Almost three-quarters (72%) of the industry professionals surveyed said that Baby Boomers are the most important consumer group for their business, while 70% said the same about Generation X. Just one in three (35%) chose Millennials, while 25% of respondents chose the “Silent Generation,” or consumers over the age of 72.
Industry member Steffi Dudek, senior scientific consultant for research firm Analyze & Realize GmbH (Berlin), said that Baby Boomers’ increased life expectancy still makes them an ideal market for healthy-aging supplements. “Aging Boomers will indeed be an important target group,” she stated in the Vitafoods press release. “Their increased life expectancy and lifestyle require investment in health, wellbeing, and performance. The optimization of physical and mental performance will also be a strong need for this group.” In the survey, 23% of respondents said that healthy aging is the most important health benefit area for their company.
Although the results from this survey indicate that it’s as important as ever to recognize the potential in the Baby Boomers demographic, many companies in the nutraceuticals industry are also beginning to focus on the needs of Generation Z, or people currently under the age of 22. One in four industry professionals surveyed said that this generation will be a key market in 10 years’ time. Half of respondents, meanwhile, said that Millennials are likely to be the most important consumer group for their business in 10 years.
Vitafoods organizers noted that presentations at the upcoming show will focus on some of these marketing issues. An educational session titled “Identifying the future consumers: Who are they?” is scheduled to take place at this year’s Vitafoods Europe trade show from May 15-17 in Geneva.
Also at Vitafoods, Jeff Hilton, cofounder, chief marketing officer of branding and marketing consultancy BrandHive, will present the session “Consumer 2.0: It's a digital world,” which will discuss changing consumer purchasing attitudes. In the press statement, Hilton said: “Increasingly, supplements are an online vendor purchase, particularly among Millennials. They prefer to use their smartphones for everyday purchases. It will become essential to have a marketing presence in all distribution channels. The watchword will be ‘meet your customers where they are,’ and increasingly that means online and social media through web forums, blogs, and influencers. This vast and explosive digital landscape is the new marketplace opportunity for nutrition products.”
These educational sessions and more, including additional forums focusing on marketing strategies for other age demographics, will be held at the Vitafoods Business and Marketing Forum.