Article by Ceri Wheeldon
Just as I think we are making headway in changing perceptions of women over 50, I receive a flurry of emails highlighting how far we still have to go.
The latest one to pop into my inbox assures me that my readers are bound to be interested in tips for ‘elderly’ women.
Elderly? At 50?
Apart from sending a short sharp response explaining that women in their 50s and 60s do not consider themselves to be elderly, I am amazed that PR and Marketing ‘professionals’ have still not realised how to relate to our age group.
It reminds me of the book ‘How to make friends and influence people’ (which I have never read), but I do wonder if someone should write a new one- ‘How to be credible and win customers over 50’.
With decades of life ahead for most of us, companies failing to understand how to engage with us are alienating a huge potential market.
But why is it that 50 is still perceived as old?
With people in the media such as Emma Thompson, Johnny Depp, George Clooney all over 50 – and with Sandra Bullock at 49 soon to join the ‘fabulous’ club, you would think that perceptions should have started to shift!
We need to change perceptions of women over 50
It’s interesting that I have in fact been shortlisted for an award for Social Enterprise by the Chartered Institute of Marketing for the role Fab after Fifty has played in changing outdated perceptions of women over 50, yet still many marketing professionals choose to see us as old – and then wonder why their campaigns fail.
We all need to keep beating the drum for change in perceptions.
In the meantime I shall continue to respond to all my emails referring to women over 50 as ‘elderly’ ‘older’ or ‘senior’ with a sharp reminder that we see ourselves as anything but!