We’re delighted to announce our new Midlife Women initiative. Designed to help clients capitalise on this untapped opportunity, our aim is to provide  insights, tools and strategies to connect authentically and make a meaningful difference in the lives of midlife women.

This initiative comes from the very soul of the business, our founders Sue Benson and Dorina D’ambrosio are both not only splat bang in this period of their life but have worked with clients whose audiences are currently talking to this group including Unbound, Hotter, Sharps, and Karndean for years.

Having recognised what an enormous period of change it is for women and just how different it is for every woman they  believed that we could use our behavioural specialism as a force  for good.

Although the menopause will clearly be a strand of our work given it’s a subject that’s on every brand or business agenda in some way or other, it will only be part of the story as it is for all of the women going through this stage.

This work is about reframing the way that marketers represent women, using this  to build competitive advantage for their business.

Here’s why these women are so important

Starting with some commercial truths and some juicy facts:

  • The UK population is ageing. The number of people in the UK aged 45 and over is expected to grow by 20% between 2015 and 2030. This means that there is a large and growing pool of potential customers for businesses that cater to midlife women. (source)
  • Midlife women in the UK are financially independent. 90% of this group are likely to earn more than £40k per year and out-earn the under 40s. 93% make most or all of the household purchasing decisions. This means that they have the money to spend on goods and services that they want and need. (source)
  • Midlife women in the UK are underserved by businesses. 69% of this group feel invisible and 61% feel that advertising targeted at them rarely shows someone they can relate to. Nearly 7/10 have stated they would be more likely to buy from brands that showed women ‘who looked like them’. This creates an opportunity for businesses that are willing to cater to midlife women. (source)
  • Research conducted by the University of Huddersfield and published in the Journal of Aging Studies found that “women’s priorities throughout midlife differ significantly in relation to cultural and ethnic affiliation and background.”. There is not ‘a’ midlife experience. This means that there is a market for businesses that offer products and services that acknowledge and respond to the variety of midlife women. (source)

Midlife women deserve better

Our proprietary research tells us that 69% of midlife women feel invisible and 62% think brand advertising rarely shows someone I can relate to. 

They think brands either ignore them, assume them to be much older than they are, or turn them off with unrealistic aspirations. Here’s some of the things they told us:

“The media makes the over 50s feel ancient. They think we want to go to afternoon tea
dances and they think you want to be called ‘lady’. I’ll be a lady when I’m 90, no
actually I won’t even be old enough when I’m 90 to be called lady. We’re not fuddy
duddies, we’re still young.” – Mid 50s woman

“When you’re younger and you see the celebrities and models and you think oooh them
shoes, those clothes, that hair style and you follow them, and you can. But when you’re
older you look at the models and think they just can’t be on that product they are selling, they
must have botox, and then the trust just goes.” – Late 40s woman

“It feels like we are forgotten at this stage of life. Once you get into your 50’s it’s like you
don’t exist. It has got a little better over the last year as more people are talking about things
like menopause but much more needs to be done.” – Early 50s woman

Our midlife women resources are built to put clients in control and overcome these issues

Midlife women panel – Our longitudinal panel of woman  keep us grounded, give us fresh insights and give clients quick and easy access to this group of women

Research reports – We’ve got a wide range of insight projects on the go and a plethora of reports and insights we can share. Follow us on social to be the first to hear. 

Strategic playbook – Using our behavioural science framework we can help marketers unlock this opportunity. From building out brand positioning to developing compelling and influential campaigns.

Creative toolkit –  Curated for your brand we’ll give you the tools to help you reach and engage with these women. Perfect for inhouse teams and agency partners alike.  

Workshops – From innovation sessions to brand proposition development our  workshops are led by highly trained facilitators who can guide you through this complex area to create commercial opportunities that will really build business value.

A note from Sue Benson

I’m so excited about this project, it’s something I’ve wanted to do for some years now. I’ve become increasingly frustrated with the way women are represented we’re either grey haired goddesses living life to the full or in a miserable menopause drudge or worse represented by some gorgeous 30 year old who hasn’t yet experienced the joys of midlife weight gain. 

What we’ve discovered is that all these women exist of course they do, but there so much more in between, but it takes skill, sensitivity and bravery to really reach them. And that’s exactly what we’ll help marketers do.