According to the New York Times, we’re worth something now. We’re worth a lot, as a matter of fact. In an article entitled “The Hottest Start-Up Market? Baby Boomers” by Constance Gustke, we Boomers are characterized as the hottest commodity that entrepreneurs can court. After all, our demographic – now apparently called the longevity market, is out there buying and consuming to the tune of 7.6 trillion dollars a year. That makes the longevity economy bigger than Japan’s.
Older Americans now are being seen, finally, as a bigger market opportunity than hip milennials, simply due to our sheer numbers and our spending power. I would venture the opinion that there’s yet a third layer: we want new stuff. If we can’t quite get around the way we used to, maybe we’d rather ride an electric bike and pedal some of the time, than use an electric wheelchair. If we need to find comfortable shoes, maybe we’d rather find something fashionable designed for us than go to the orthopedic footwear store. If we need to monitor our activity, maybe we’d rather use a wearable smartphone and an app than clip on a pedometer. If we want to share our home or apartment, maybe we’d rather use a site just for us like Roommates4Boomers (smiley face) than go on apartments.com.
It all boils down to our penchant for independence, for staying young and fit as best we can, and for doing it our way. If you’ve got a good idea for something new that would serve us, and please us, you’ve got a potential money-maker on your hands. I’m gratified to see that the experts and advice-givers are seeing that now, and in a very big way.