Changing the Word Retirement for Good

Updated: Jul 15, 2020

Winter can be a daunting time for elderly people. Over 65s think it’s normal to be weighed down by winter worries, loneliness, security. On the other hand, our research from focus groups highlighted that our audience don’t associate themselves as ‘being old’, or live up to the stereotypes that come with age, but instead see retirement as a new mindset. For too long the marketing industry has caricatured older audiences, creating a totally misguided perception of retirement. When you consider only 5.6% of the ad industry is over 50, it’s hardly surprising. For us, the challenge became getting into this new mindset.

In-depth strategic and creative positioning work resulted in a shift of tone for the brand - turning apprehension into aspiration. We took this insight and created new messaging which subverts the perception of what it’s like to be over 65 in winter. By juxtaposing stereotypical cold, lonely winters, with warm, sociable communities, we could position retirement property as an exciting new chapter, rather than something to worry about.

Creative touches such as using the warm imagery we shot, and genuine people enjoying themselves, highlight the community and mindset more than just bricks and mortar. We tried to stay away from the word ‘retirement’ and typical winter imagery, as we know from our research many McCarthy & Stone homeowners don’t feel like those connotations fit their narrative. In fact, 90% of homeowners have said making the move to McCarthy & Stone had improved their quality of life; and our new creative became the vehicle for communicating exactly that.