Don’t worry, media: Old people love you

Amid all the doom and gloom about the decline of the traditional media business, whether it’s books, magazines, television or newspapers, it’s nice to see a ray of hope like the one contained in a recent PricewaterhouseCoopers analysis of the industry, which boils down to (and I’m paraphrasing here): “Old people still like you.” According to a description of the report from MediaPost, while the “Net generation” is focusing on digital and online forms of media:

“consumers over the age of 50 are creating a balance in the industry by devoting significant amounts of attention to the more traditional media of their generation.”

And while the number of media consumers under the age of 25 amounts to as much as 40 per cent of the population of some countries such as India, China and Brazil (it’s 34 per cent in the U.S.), the consulting firm says that the number of older consumers continues to grow, thanks to the demographic bubble created by the Baby Boom. PricewaterhouseCoopers says that the 50-plus population:

“will see double digit growth rates and globally, this population will increase from 1.1 billion to 1.25 billion, a 13.1% rise through 2012. This growth will help sustain traditional formats.”

So there’s your business model for traditional media in a nutshell: the growing population of geezers. In other words, lots more ads for — not to mention feature stories about — hip replacements, adult-incontinence products and luxury cruise vacations. Hurray.

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