Blogger’s Park: The second-last benchers of India | The Financial Express

Blogger’s Park: The second-last benchers of India

Don’t send the 40-55-year-olds to teerth yatra yet

Blogger’s Park: The second-last benchers of India
Shashank Rawat is senior strategy director, Digitas India

By Shashank Rawat

India is a country where every marketer is obsessed with the youth and in their infatuation have missed out a crucial group who have made India what it is today. These are the ones with the highest disposable incomes, who have been sandwiched between the Spotify’s young and the Baghban’s old. If I were to take the parallel of a school classroom where the front benchers are the orthodox and disciplined baby boomers and the backbenchers are the renegades and ready to challenge the current order GenZ lot, then these are our second last backbenchers.

Who are these people?

Statistically, they are called quadragenarians (aged between 40-49) and quinquagenarians (in between 50-59 years of age). We see them as the father or the elder brother, the cousin with streaks of grey in their hair and the sister-in-law you consult when dealing with your life’s problems. But why am I describing them in such detail when we already know about them?

A lot of data, articles and POVs have been pointing out to this group but our obsession with the young has somewhere put them in a blind spot. According to world lab data, the biggest global consumer group in the upcoming years is going to be this group. And these are the ones who are going to be the biggest spenders from the different age cohorts. And why shouldn’t they be? The second last backbenchers have already scaled the peaks of their careers, garnered a high purchasing power and have experimented enough with their choices and interests to cement their personality.

They are the ones dancing with their junior staff to Hindi songs, sitting in offices in leather jackets waiting for the next idea to influence pop culture and are not always discussing op-eds, but rather are grooving to the latest tunes with a beer, discussing Twitter trends. They are disciplined by their foundations, vibrant because of their life experiences and rich because of their inbuilt algorithm to grow. They are not trying to be cool or get accepted, they’re just being themselves because they grew up in the Mahabharat era, attuned themselves to be modern with dial-up internet and started to flourish and flaunt their personalities on social media.

So what makes them so important?

Indians today are marrying and settling down late in life and the time is not far away when the idea of what it means to be a 40 or a 55-year-old in India is going to drastically change and so does the need to change our perspectives towards them.

In the end, all I have to say is that let’s give them some recognition in our thoughts even if the next marketing mix will be for the young, learn about their attitudes, needs and behaviour in our next brainstorming session and most importantly let’s stop looking at them as uncles waiting for their ‘teerth yatra’ packages when in reality they are looking to start a business which caters to the ‘teerth yaatris’ in India.

The author is senior strategy director, Digitas India

Also Read: ‘We offer value for money, and that brings customers back for more’

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First published on: 23-11-2022 at 09:03 IST