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How Retirement Services Target Aging Consumers

How Retirement Services Target Aging Consumers

Your parents have been on Facebook for years. They might leave comments on pictures of grandchildren or share memories that you might not want to remember publicly. 

But during the pandemic, older generations turned to social media than they did ever before. 

For some, it was a primary way to communicate with family and get updates about the virus. For others, newly in retirement or close to it, it might just have been something to do without time in the office or activities outside the home. 

Retirement services are aware of how much time older generations spend on the internet. With increased social media usage this past year, retirement services have invested more in programmatic advertising. 

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Baby Boomers Use Social Media for Learning

According to Pew Research, 45% of individuals ages 65 and older use at least one social media site and 73% of 50- to 64-year-olds use social media. Of all the social media platforms, Facebook has the highest number of users in these age ranges.

The numbers clearly indicate that older individuals are on the platforms. When you look deeper, older generations interact with social media differently than younger generations. 

“Rather than taking selfies or giving out information regarded as personal, these older users enjoy filling up their timelines sharing articles, photos, and videos relating to their interests, and do so quite frequently,” explains Jake Tully, head of the creative department at Trucking Unlimited. “With this in mind, we try to cultivate an online presence with news stories that may bring the opinionated people out of the shadows.”

Older generations treat social media as a place of sharing ideas, hobbies and learning (with bonus pictures of grandbabies). This makes it a great place for learning about something that matters greatly for their current stage of life—retirement. 

How are retirement services trying to build brand awareness, educate and attract customers with programmatic advertising?

MediaRadar Insights

Financial services—and retirement services specifically—have been buying much more than last year.

Across formats, retirement services spending was up 37% year-over-year between January and August. But programmatic placements specifically were up even more. In the same time period, buying was up 63%.

Retirement Services, Jan-Aug, 2020 vs 2021 Chart

Month-over-month growth within the programmatic space is slowly starting to decrease, but in August spend is still up 68% year-over-year ($20.4 million in 2021 vs $12.1 million in 2020). 

The largest yearly growth was in January at 119%. But the largest difference in spend was in June 2021 where retirement services spent $23.4 million in programmatic advertising vs $11.9 million in 2020.

Between May and June 2021, we saw the largest jump in spend, an increase of 38% month over month.

In digital spend, programmatic advertising made up 54% total digital spending in 2021 (Jan – Aug).

Fidelity Ad Example
Fisher Investments Ad Example
Charles Schwab Ad Example
TD Ameritrade Ad Example

When we look at specific companies, we found that:

  • 54% of digital spend from Charles Schwab is programmatic.
  • 47% of digital spend from Fisher Investments is programmatic.
  • 31% of digital spend from TD Ameritrade is programmatic. 
  • 31% of digital spend from Fidelity Investments placed is programmatic.

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