The ARD/ZDF online study from 2020 shows that for the first time in Germany's history, all those under 50 are online. But those with more years of life are also - very soon also 100 percent. Because 95 percent of the over-50s already use the internet daily - and the trend is rising rapidly due to Corona and home office.
The increase in the number of over 70s is very impressive: Their number grew by 17 percent from 2019 to 2020. The study leaders attribute this development to the Covid 19 pandemic, because of which people are increasingly at home, working online and being entertained. For both, they are increasingly using the video portal YouTube, especially for acquiring knowledge with explanatory videos and tutorials.
This development is very interesting for furniture companies because they can now also use this platform to address their target group directly and explain complex production processes, technical backgrounds or instructions simply in videos or strengthen customer loyalty with service offers.
Furniture companies on YouTube
Many furniture companies have been using YouTube for years and reach many of their customers with it. Ikea Germany, for example, has its own channel on YouTube, more than 71,000 subscribers and almost 69 million views since 2009. The films are viewed more than 10,000 times on average, show furnishing and decorating tips, but also films about aid campaigns and sustainability.
The furniture store XXXLutz has generated more than 15,000 subscribers on YouTube since 2013, more than 32 million views and shows on its channel furnishing advisor and cooking videos, info on jobs in the XXXLutz Group and short spots. The advertising films with Matthias Schweighöfer are clicked on millions of times, but surprisingly and by far the most frequently viewed film was the one on the company's anniversary and the associated discount offer more than eleven million times.
Why it pays to address Best Agers on all channels
The 50+generation is fashion-conscious, fit, hungry for experience, quality-conscious, eager to buy and consume, an Austrian study 2019 by Marketagent.com found. Most of them perceive themselves as financially strong and rate their finances as above average.
At the same time, they are experienced in life and correspondingly demanding. They like to get information online, but still prefer personal advice and shopping in bricks-and-mortar stores. This behaviour suits the furniture industry very well and makes people over 50 interesting contacts. We also reported on this on ambista back in 2018.
YouTube marketing for the golden agers
YouTube marketing is the design, optimisation and distribution of individual videos that are distributed individually or on a dedicated YouTube channel. Videos are a very good way of addressing customers because they speak directly and emotionally to the audience and potential customers.
"The category 'Home & Living' has been quite popular on YouTube for years," knows social media expert Hendrik Unger, who runs the advertising agency 36grad in Cologne. "Room tours in which users present their latest furnishings and DIY videos in which furniture is 'pimped' are very popular. This is exactly the kind of topic that furniture companies can dock onto."
Incorporating YouTube into the marketing strategy is becoming increasingly important for furniture companies. Not only because more and more people over 50 are using the platform, but also because it is the second largest search engine after Google. And even to be found with Google, videos on YouTube are important because Google adds them to its search results alongside images and news.
To do this, the YouTube videos have to be posted online with the appropriate titles, keywords and metadata, and they have to be posted regularly: "Every social media network thrives on regular freshness. Viewers over 50 also subscribe to channels and want regular updates.
One video upload per quarter is therefore too little," advises Hendrik Unger. "The opportunity lies not only in possible viral effects on YouTube, but also in placing oneself as a company for popular keywords for years to come, in gaining broad visibility in the mass medium YouTube and thus directing the appropriate target group to one's own website."
The right approach for people over 50
Furniture companies use YouTube to optimise their visibility on the web and can use videos to present themselves and their offers - in a targeted manner and suitable for each target group. For people over 50, such films are most credible when employees present the company in a factual and informative way, with a touch of humour, but always authentically.
This conveys the information prospective customers are looking for and at the same time arouses emotions that create a connection to the company. Explainer videos also help to illustrate complex products, building instructions or services. These can be animated videos, but also interviews with experts from your own company.
Communication and web scientist Sarah Jacobs recommends that companies use clear language that avoids youthful expressions and anglicisms. After all, not all people of the post-war generation know English and feel little addressed by an overly youthful, casual appearance. At the same time, they do not want to be seen as "seniors" or "elderly". The golden, respectful middle ground has to be found.
Sarah Jacobs sees an interesting aspect with Best Agers in the fact that they are happy to pass on products, brands, content etc. to their friends and acquaintances if they are convinced by them. "The difference to the younger target group, however, is that Best Agers do not always find their way around social media platforms and websites so intuitively.
It is therefore advisable to place a share button very prominently and conspicuously to give them the opportunity to share the content as easily as child's play," recommends Jacobs. YouTube is also ideal for this, because the share button is prominently placed directly below.
Hendrik Unger is a social media expert and has made a name for himself with his advertising agency 36grad in Cologne. ©36grad GmbH
Author: Christine Sommer-Guist