Tag Archives: Market segmentation

The Changing Face of America

Demographic information is very important to marketers. Demographics are descriptors; data that can be somewhat easily described such as age, gender, education, occupation, ethnicity, household size, and more. With this information, marketers can best target campaigns to the correct target market.

The recent census results highlight the changing American demographics from 2010 to 2020. Population has significantly changed in many ways since the 2010 Census results.

  • U.S. metro areas grew 9%, resulting in 86% of the population in metro areas compared to 85% in 2020.
  • The largest cities in the country are New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, and Phoenix.
  • The fastest growing U.S. metro area was The Villages, Fla., which grew 39% to about 130,000 people.
  • People who reported being more than one race spiked.
  • Multiracial population is now 33.8 million people, a 276% increase since 2010 (Note that the census tool has been revised since 2010 to give a more accurate racial report.)
  • White population declined by 8.6%.
  • African-American population grew 5.6%
  • Asian population grew by 35%.
  • Hispanic population grew by 23%.
  • The overall U.S. population growth has slowed to 7.4%, the slowest rate in a century.
  • More than 77.9% of the population were age 18 and over.
  • Housing units increased 6.7% to more than 140 million units.

No one expects the country to stay the same. What surprised you about the results?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the importance of demographics as part of environmental scanning and marketing plans.
  2. Show the recent Census results: https://www.census.gov/newsroom/press-releases/2021/population-changes-nations-diversity.html
  3. The 2020 Census map viewer can be found at: https://www.census.gov/library/visualizations/2021/geo/demographicmapviewer.html
  4. Divide students into teams. Have each team review the results. What surprised them? How can the data be used?
  5. Class discussion: What are some of the broad implications of the changing U.S. demographics?

Source:  U.S. Census Bureau; New York Time; other news sources

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Peloton Adds New Products and Cuts (Some) Prices

The pandemic has been tough on most companies. Consumer demand for products has shifted, as well as buying behavior. Some companies won’t make it successfully through this period. However, unlike other companies, Peloton seems to have weathered the Covid-19 pandemic very well. Sales for home fitness equipment have been strong as gyms and fitness centers have closed or limited the number of patrons in their facilities.

Recently, Peloton expanded its product line with new versions, and has cut prices on older equipment by roughly 16%. Peloton currently sells two primary types of exercise equipment: a stationary bike priced at $2,245 and a treadmill priced at $4,295. When the new products launch, the new Peloton Bike+ will be $2, 495, but the older bike will be reduced to $1,895. The new bike will accommodate more than just biking and includes upgraded cycling, a better sound system, and a 24-inch touchscreen that swivels for yoga or weight training in a different area.

The new treadmill will be cheaper at $2,495 compared to the existing treadmill at $4,295. The new prices are intended to extend the customer base while still offering high-margin products.

Peloton continues to offer “connected fitness” to its subscribers, linking them to instructors and other workout fans so that even when working out alone at home, customers can connect with a community of other riders and instructors. Monthly subscription memberships are $39/month and the company currently has roughly 866,000 subscribers. In addition to cycling classes, the company streams yoga instruction, strength training, running, and more workout programs.

Ready to ride?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss industries impacted by Covid-19. Which companies are winners? Losers?
  2. How has the pandemic impacted Peloton?
  3. Show Peloton’s Web site: https://www.onepeloton.com/
  4. What is the impact of the new products and price reductions for older products?
  5. Compare a Peloton bike and subscription to the average gym membership. What are advantages and disadvantages?
  6. Divide students into teams and have each team research and compare Peloton’s products and services to its competitors:
    1. NordicTrack: https://www.nordictrack.com/
    2. Echelon Fitness: https://echelonfit.com/
    3. Mirror: https://www.mirror.co/
    4. Tonal: https://www.tonal.com/
  7. What pricing strategies is Peloton using? Will this be an advantage or a disadvantage compared to the competition?

Sources: Associated Press; New York Times; Wall Street Journal; other news sources

 

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Where’s the Meat?

In case you haven’t noticed, there are a growing number of meatless ‘meat’ products now available at both grocery stores and restaurants. In the past few months alone, several fast food chains launched chicken-free chicken and meatless burgers to their offerings, and all seem to delight customers who are looking for plant-based alternatives to meat.

In one instance, KFC supplied an Atlanta franchise with faux-meat chicken from Beyond Meat called the ‘Beyond Fried Chicken’. Customers arrived before the doors even opened and the restaurant sold out of its supplies in just five hours! Of course, social media was responsible for the rush to test, but nonetheless, selling out what was supposed to be a several day experiment in less than a day says a great deal about the changing consumer tastes.

Burger King is already established in the meat-free burger category and has been selling the ‘Impossible Burger’, using the plant-based patties from Impossible Meats. White Castle is also in the mix with its ‘Impossible Slider’ (also from Impossible Meats), also sold nationwide.

And last, but not least, McDonald’s has jumped into the meatless game with its ‘PLT’ burger from Beyond Meat – plant, lettuce, and tomato. While today the PLT is only available in Ontario, Canada, it seems likely to make the move to a national distribution as well.

What’s going on? What are these new ‘meats’? The term ‘meatless meats’ is a contentious point, but the products are made by combining plant-based fats, binders, fruit and vegetable-based colors and flavor to create a fibrous texture of meat (no animal components). While these types of products have existed for a number of years, they were commonly marketed only to vegetarians and vegans. Today’s new plant-based meats are aimed directly at meat-eaters, particularly consumers who are concerned about climate change and eliminating animal products from their diets. However, plant-based meats are not typically as healthy as eating unprocessed vegetables and beans and meat consumption is still increasing worldwide. The burgers are often high in calories and fats.

Are you hungry?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Review meatless meat products and meals as needed:
    1. McDonald’s PLT burger: https://youtu.be/StVR1njx2ow
    2. KFC meatless chicken: https://youtu.be/U-imMy7Ohik
    3. Burger King Impossible Whopper: https://youtu.be/N9FED3jkNTo
    4. Impossible Whopper: https://www.bk.com/menu-item/impossible-whopper
    5. The Better Meat Co: https://www.bettermeat.co/
    6. Beyond Meat: https://www.beyondmeat.com/
    7. Impossible Foods: https://impossiblefoods.com/
    8. Carl’s Jr Burger calorie: https://www.carlsjr.com/menu/nutritional_calculator/beyond-famous-star-with-cheese
  2. Discuss the five factors of an environmental scan: Social trends, technology trends, competition, economic trends, and legal/regulatory factors.
  3. Divide students into teams. Have each team use their laptops or mobile devices to discover at least two points in each of the five categories of an environmental scan.
  4. Debrief the exercise by compiling information on the white board.
  5. Do these factors show why companies are embracing the new foods?
  6. Extra video: If students are interested, a scholarly video about climate change and food can be found at: https://youtu.be/8miQs3mPGu8

Sources: New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Advertising Age, Associated Press, and other news sources

 

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