And marketers aren't shy about tapping into the 36% of these adults who have purchased an item in the last three months from the comfort of their homes.
The TV medium allows marketers to tap into the emotion surrounding a product while encouraging an immediate, measurable response, says Bill McCabe, senior VP-account director at direct response agency A. Eicoff, Chicago.
"It's so easy [for] the ad industry to get caught up in the fast MTV flash-like cuts of a commercial," says Mr. McCabe, "but someone who is 65 years old isn't going to absorb information that quickly." Response is better from the more information-packed medium, he says.
Direct marketing overall is a reliable method for reaching seniors, accounting for 69 million transactions in a three-month period.
For Liberty Medical, direct response TV has become the primary way the consumer medical supplier promotes its diabetes testing, respiratory and enteral nutrition supplies. It plans to spend more than $30 million on direct TV advertising this year.
Liberty's diabetes spots, created by A. Eicoff, feature actor Wilford Brimley. Mr. Brimley, who is diabetic, talks about Liberty's services, including compliance follow-up.