Tuesday, January 20, 2009

U.S. business ignores largest disposable income market

Feel sorry, very sorry for business in the U.S.A. Feb. 19, 2009, the First Brats, Malia, 10, and Sasha (Natasha), 7, Obama jumped up and down at The Kids’ Inaugural held in Washington, D.C., on the eve of their father’s coronation as president.

Other than Disney, businesses seem to have NO clue how to market to tweens. The concert featured Miley Cyrus opening the show and the Jonas Brothers closing. In between were Demi Lovato, Corbin Bleu and Bow Wow.

Lovato, Jonas, Cyrus, Bleu – all on Hollywood Records, which manages most of Disney’s stars. Bow Wow is on Sony.

It appears labels like Sony, Warner Bros and all the majors have missed the tween market. Hollywood Records exploits it well through its Disney affiliation. Add Aly & Aj, Hilary Duff, Vanessa Hudgens, Hayden Panettiere, Jordan Pruitt, The Cheetah Girls and soundtracks. The key to tween music is Radio Disney. This is tweens’ biggest marketing tool.

Radio giant Clear Channel ignores the tween market. Granted, all the Disney tween stars market their concerts through Clear Channel’s Live Nation, yet Clear Channel’s radio stations leave the tween market to Disney. That’s equivalent to Toyota, Honda, etc. leaving truck sales to Ford; wouldn’t happen. Even the auto industry is ignoring tweens.

Disney utilizes ABC television on Saturday mornings, Disney and Disney Family. They know media and how to reach tweens.

This is the largest marketing segment in the world. I saw a guy about 50 with two tween daughters at the mall; bags of Hollister in their hand (Why always Hollister? Inadvertently marketing to tweens through older sisters?). Tweens own the wallets of the latter-day baby-boomers.

Look at Malia and Sasha. Their dad now makes half-a-million a year. They got a concert with their favorite stars, Jonas Brothers and Miley Cyrus. Tweens get what they want from their parents. From a disposable income perspective, tweens represent the largest audience, segment or group.

Here’s the future, too. You can bet the Obama Brats have iPods. When they are 15, they will have iPhones. Apple owns these children. Have never understood Microsoft’s recent campaigns about “I’m a PC.” Yet I do understand the future of laptop computing – and that is computing’s future – belongs to Apple. Microsoft targets geeks. Apple is targeting tweens through iPods and iPhones. Microsoft is confusing. Every three years you need to buy a new computer to get the latest operating system. With Apple, you update, not replace.

The U.S. is going to lose its financial future due to companies ignoring tweens

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