The gray market: a frequently ignored business opportunity

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Older adults are a business opportunity that is often not taken advantage of, despite their great acquisition capabilities

The gray market: a frequently ignored business opportunity

The population of the world is getting older, that is a reality. Although the world population continues to rise and by 2030 it will reach 8.6 billion people, according to data provided by the UN in 2017, the world faces a significant drop in fertility rates. In other words: yes, the population of the world will grow, but every time, those who inhabit it, will be older.

Leer en español: El grey market: una oportunidad de negocio frecuentemente ignorada

Under this perspective, it is important to take into account a market option that is becoming increasingly important: the gray market. Also known as the silver market, or senior market, the gray market represents products and services focused on people over 60 years old, that is, older adults.

This market premise works basically under two ideas: on the one hand, most of the older adults are economically active people, with a good acquisition capacity and, on the other hand, the current market brands do not usually have within their target, old people. In this way, it is possible to open a market between people who can become loyal customers and who can take advantage of both widely established services and new services created specifically for them.

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This market is a phenomenon that occurs worldwide. The European countries are among those that take the stop with various services and market opportunities for this population, although Latin America is not far behind. Within this market there is a wide variety of products and services offered in different countries of Latin America that seek, not only to find a new niche and new clients but to offer services that can also help to improve the quality of people.

The offers range from the most common to new ways to see and understand the services that are consumed daily. Among the most common services are those that include all the accompaniment and care of the elderly, both in their daily lives and in all the trips and commitments they must attend.

Capitalizing the market for the elderly

There are several examples in Latin America, such as companies like "Paso por ti" (Colombian) or "Emma" (Mexican). These companies seek to accompany older adults to different commitments, such as medical appointments or bank procedures. The focus of attention is on the company and assistance, recognizing a fundamental problem: often, older adults, especially at older ages, require continuous assistance that often cannot be provided by family or friends. Within the same line are companies that specialize in selling products for the care and day to day of the elderly.

However, the most tempting offers of services are those that put their point in more common experiences, but from a specialized perspective, designed specifically for older adults. Examples of this could be specialized education programs, such as "Saberes de Vida" (Colombian) or travel agencies dedicated exclusively to older adults, such as the program subsidized by the Chilean government, "Vacaciones Tercera Edad".

As you can see, the markets are now increasingly diverse, and phenomena such as startups can find a new target audience in the gray market. However, it is still necessary to forget all the prejudices about the elderly and the elderly and, even more, to recognize populations that are often forgotten, but that have all the potential of consumption, such as adults around 50 years of age. For now, it is necessary to take advantage of the possibilities that exist and think of some new ones.


LatinAmerican Post | Jorge Ovalle

Translated from "El Grey Market: una oportunidad de negocio frecuentemente ignorada"

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