Sixty is the New Thirty? Really?

December 1, 2011 at 3:08 pm Leave a comment

Click on me!

Okay I’ll admit it, I just turned sixty. I might as well admit it, I posted the event on FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and many other social media sites. I got well wishes from dozens of people, many I’ve never met. Some from far off places like Seattle. Isn’t social media amazing?

Society says that I should get me a cane (in fact my oldest son gave me one), find me a rocking chair, sit back and fade away. After all the young are in charge now, or so they think. Apparently my life is over now…or is it?

I don’t think so. Inside in my head I still feel 17. My body, however, is telling me something different. I’m not able to move as fast, or as gracefully. I wander around at times wondering why I came into a certain room. That’s all a part of growing old. No surprises here. So why does society say I’m washed up?

The youth movement started long ago in advertising. Because younger meant prettier and more visually appealing, youth was used to push products. It’s called brand identity. You identify with a brand because you visualize yourself becoming that buff young man if you use the product. Most people with common sense know that’s not how it works, but nonetheless it’s been an effective advertising tool for decades and still works today.

The thing to remember is that gray hair and wrinkles don’t affect thinking ability. In fact with age comes wisdom and experience that actually makes thinking more efficient and the results of that thinking more valuable. Sadly wisdom and experience aren’t really valued in today’s marketplace. Too bad.

Maybe I don’t get some of the commercials today because I’m not young and hip, but there are an awful lot of people around my age that don’t either. We’re a growing demographic with more disposal income than the youth market so advertisers better start taking notice. We are buying more computers and electronic “gadgets” per capita each and every year. We have more money, more time, and we are smart enough not to be fooled by slick, mindless, advertising. Sonic dropped its agency because the “hip and with it” advertising that won many awards didn’t increase revenue. I for one didn’t want to eat their food and become stupid. There’s that brand identity thing again.

I’m proud to be sixty. At thirty I didn’t have near the experience or wisdom I have now. I now have a college degree that I didn’t have then. I’m not struggling financially like I was then. In other words I wouldn’t trade my life now for the one back then just to be young. I like being older. With age I now have credibility and a track record.

So to all those agencies and companies that lust after the next graduating group of young people who will work for nothing remember this: you get what you pay for. Age brings so much more to the table but you have to pay for it. The bottom line is that your return will be larger as well. Remember our brains are more efficient and contain more knowledge.

Think about it.

Do you get what I’m saying? Do you value the wisdom and experience that age brings to the table? Then I want to partner with you and help you tell your story to the world. My contact info is:

Michael Irvin
Creative Project Manager
913.677.7060 cell: 913.530.7030
mirvin1129@yahoo.com

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