13 July 2005

The sweet spot

Grabbing a chunk of the youth mind and market is what many advertisers are putting their money on. From media channels like MTV to apparel brands like Levi’s to soft drinks like Coke to personal care products like Whisper Ultra to retail food chains like McDonald’s. Some advertisers just can’t get away from targeting this youth market.

Not just multinational brands like the ones I’ve mentioned, but local Indian brands are also in this fray. There are too many to name, but here are a few you would have heard about and seen: IT institutes like NIIT and Aptech, channels like B4U and Zoom, 2-wheelers like Bajaj Pulsar and TVS Scooty, apparel brands like Park Avenue and Wills Lifestyle, personal accessories like Titan Fast Track, and retail chains like Planet M, Barista and CafĂ© Coffee Day.

I’ve had the opportunity to work with some of these brands and I know for certain that their target is ideally between the ages of 18 and 24. Given a little leverage it extends between 16 and 28 years. It’s what’s called the demographic sweet spot (an American term for sure) – and advertisers want their campaigns to hit this strike zone. Here’s what an advertiser for a well-known youth brand had to say about the sweet spot (can’t name him, sorry):

“That is thought to be the age at which young people have a lot of disposable income and they’re also brand-sensitive. They haven’t quite made up their minds yet about from which brands they are going to spend the rest of their buying. And there’s a certain amount of research which suggests that, if you get the young person at that age when their minds are still unformed commercially, you can brand them, as it were, and then have their allegiance for the rest of their consuming lifetimes.”

And, there you have it.

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