Retailers be on alert: Millennials may be getting all the buzz but it’s aging baby boomers who have the bucks.
That’s one reason why, as Florida keeps getting older, smart developers are paying more attention to older shoppers, said Joseph Coughlin, founder and director of the AgeLab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Coughlin was in Orlando on Monday for the International Council of Shopping Centers Florida Conference, offering tips to 4,000 attendees who work in the retail and commercial real estate industries. He told them their marketing dollars would be better spent targeting aging generations rather than younger ones.
And he had the research to back it up.
Fewer people are having kids. As a result, there will be more people in the world in the over-60 age group than there will be in the 1-15 age group by 2047.
“That’s never happened before,” Coughlin said. “Japan is selling more adult diapers than diapers for children. Think about that for a minute.”
Local economic development groups have cited recruiting and retaining millennials as a top priority and called for a more attractive work and play environment here for them. The Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corp. has even formed a “millennial council” with area entrepreneurs to share their insights.
Yet nearly 70 percent of all disposable income in the economy right now is controlled by Americans in the 50 and up demographic. And while 70 percent of those still live in suburban communities, there is a recent push that shows some are moving into more urban areas, often in smaller metropolitan cities usually tied to a major university.
Read more at Tampa Bay Times.