Untapped Markets

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Demographics have made headlines recently, as the first details of Census 2000 were released. You may have expected to read something about it in our pages this month. While we're probably more excited about this new data than any other publication, we've decided to wait a month to begin our coverage. That's because the information most meaningful to business strategists and marketers depends on more detailed data than that released by the Census Bureau at press time. So, be sure to check out the March 2001 issue for the first of our quarterly census updates, where we'll make sense of all the numbers and track the way companies are using them.

While we keep you in census suspense, we've got plenty of demographic trend information to keep you satisfied. For instance, you might think you know more than enough about Baby Boomers. But there's a segment of that generation that hasn't been put under our microscope - until now. In our cover story, Contributing Editor Alison Stein Wellner chronicles the demographics and formative experiences of black Boomers in "The Forgotten Baby Boom." Numbering 9 million consumers, this is a market well worth getting to know, something many marketers have neglected to do, so far.

Another cohort that marketers have overlooked is the growing number of divorced women in the United States. Divorcees typically suffer financially after a marital meltdown, and this life-changing event greatly impacts their consumer behavior, writes Contributing Editor Joan Raymond, in her feature "The Ex-Files." Some marketers are already taking advantage of this trend: Images of divorce, once taboo in national marketing campaigns, are starting to take center stage in advertisements.

Speaking of center stage, this month we include an excerpt from a new book by Judith Langer, director of the newly-formed Roper/Langer Qualitative Division at Roper Starch Worldwide. She's been moderating focus groups for 30 years, and has encapsulated her observations and experiences in The Mirrored Window: Focus Groups from a Moderator's Point of View, from Paramount Market Publishing Inc. Contributing Editor Wellner worked with Langer on the manuscript. Additionally, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention a new book authored by Wellner herself. It's an updated version of her 1998 release, Best of Health: The Demographics of Health Care Consumers, just released by New Strategist Publications.

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