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Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthday dear Barbie …

Source: TruthDig.com http://www.truthdig.com/cartoon/item/20090301_barbie_at_50
Source: TruthDig.com http://www.truthdig.com/cartoon/item/20090301_barbie_at_50

Barbie, the iconic toy of the Baby Boom, turns 56 today. Like her peers, the doll has seen great personal and societal changes. From mass production to personalization. From activist (she received a black friend during the Civil Rights movement) to flashpoint for debates on female identity. And, like her peers, this Boomer has reinvented herself at least a thousand times.

Assuming that, like her peers, Barbie is going to enjoy a longevity bonus of several decades more … what will this Boomer be when she’s 86 years old? A frail patient, a blushing newlywed, a demanding consumer, an eager entrepreneur?

Last Thursday a large group gathered at Harvard Business School to consider Boomers, seniors and the market opportunities aging represents. Panelists and speakers included Fortune 100 companies such as CVS and Procter and Gamble, along with New England leader Benchmark Senior Living and many caregiver focused groups.

The event led to Creating Results’ MOST SHARED tweet of the week, quoting Joseph Coughlin of the MIT AgeLab:

“The greatest success of humankind is living longer.” Also its greatest challenge.

We’ll be sharing observations and insights from the “Our Aging Market” event on this blog in the near future.

 

There was quite a variety and quite a lot of sharing of Boomer- and aging-related links on Twitter this week. The top items:

* Health — 45% of RNs were over 50 years old in 2008; is there a mass exodus of experienced nurses coming?

“One of the greatest challenges the healthcare industry is facing in its efforts to prepare for the needs of the elderly is training and hiring the health professionals needed to care for this population, such as primary care workers. Yet, it is no secret that today the nation is facing a significant primary care shortage. As the situation stands, nearly 40,000 primary care physicians are needed to meet the demands of the nation – a number that is only expected to rise as insurance coverage is expanded to more people through the ACA and the baby boom generation ages.”

Download this PDF report from the Center for Health Affairs. http://ow.ly/JDcMa

* Digital — GOOD advice from HubSpot on the WORST advice given for driving website traffic: http://bit.ly/18uDjfl

RELATED: You’ll find website advice specific to boomers and seniors in our Social, Silver Surfers ebook. http://bit.ly/SSS13blog

Hands* Health — Is B2B is the next B2C in medtech marketing? How are you innovating to meet shift? http://bit.ly/1wjCP71

* Travel — While retireees spend more overall on luxury travel, Gen X burns through more money every day they are away from home. http://bit.ly/1MkP45j

 * Hysterical  —  Thank you, AdAge copywriters, for this fantastic headline: “Were Millennials Just Figments of Our Fevered Imagination All Along? Fear of Youth Demographic Overblown as Invasive Alien Species Grows Up.” http://bit.ly/1HmqEYh

 

Have an opinion on Barbie, or any of this week’s links? Please share your comments below.

About The Author

Erin Read

Erin Read spearheads integrated and digital marketing programs for organizations targeting mature consumers. She writes, researches and speaks about marketing to baby boomers and seniors. Erin has addressed local, regional, international conferences on generational marketing. She is the co-author of three national studies/eBooks (Photo Finish; Social, Silver Surfers 2010 & 2013) and the principal blogger for Mature Marketing Matters.

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