Hallmark Has Boomer Message

Mar 25, 2009  •  Post A Comment

Hallmark Channel says its viewers may be oldies, but they’re goodies if you’re looking for households that buy consumer packaged goods.
Hallmark, which aims at a baby-boomer audience, is swimming upstream with marketers and media buyers who are fixated on reaching younger consumers.
The long-held belief in media and marketing circles is that younger viewers are more impressionable when it comes to advertising, and that if you are able to hook them young, they can be loyal consumers of the brands that reach them for a long time. Older folks, by contrast, are thought to be too set in their ways to be persuaded by commercials.
To counter that notion, older-skewing networks like Hallmark turn to research.
In its upfront presentations, Hallmark is pointing to data from Nielsen Fusion Metrics that show people who consume Hallmark content across multiple platforms account for $280 billion in annual spending in the consumer packaged goods category, or 66.5% of the total.
Nielsen Fusion Metrics combines Nielsen’s Homescan Panel with its television and online measurement services. Hallmark Channel is working with the service to measure cross-platform reach and to determine the spending power and brand loyalty of its baby-boomer audience.
Turns out those Hallmark households also spend about 10% more on consumer packaged goods than the average U.S. home, which should make it attractive to marketers of those products.
The first client campaign that Hallmark Channel used Nielsen Fusion Metrics to measure was during its 2008 cross-platform holiday promotion featuring Nestle Toll House products.
The campaign was designed to reach consumers on TV, online, in 4,000 Hallmark Gold Crown Stores, in Hallmark magazine and in Wal-Mart stores.
According to Nielsen, the consumers who were exposed to the promotion spend $441 million on Nestle Toll House products, or about half of the total spending on the brand.
The Hallmark multiplatform consumers spend about 10% more on Nestle Toll House cookies per year than consumers not exposed to any of the Hallmark brands.
“These findings provide further proof that the baby-boomer audience is a powerful segment of the population for any advertiser to include in their media mix,” said Bill Abbott, executive VP for advertising sales at the Hallmark Channel.
“As a leader in reaching this consumer base, Hallmark is strategically positioned to help clients attract baby boomers who will, in turn, open their wallets and make product purchases,” Mr. Abbott added. “And, as the first cable network to partner with Nielsen to produce a single source of brand, retailer and product usage ratings, we can uniquely help buyers and planners address the challenging economic times and improve ROI. Hallmark is, in essence, the stimulus brand for the baby-boomer generation.”
Hallmark says the Nielsen data shows other interesting things about baby-boomer spending habits that marketers ought to know.
For one thing, for two-thirds of the 6,000 brands surveyed, baby-boomer consumers accounted for 55% or more of the purchases. Their sales totaled more than $100 billion, a much higher total than non-baby-boomer households.
Nielsen also found there was no clear distinction between baby-boomer households and younger households in brand loyalty. In some cases, boomer households may be less brand-loyal, making targeting them with advertising more important to marketers.


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