York Urbanist

The 40-60 demographic

They are the leading edge of the technology generation.  If they did not pick up on the computer in the 1980’s, then they quickly learned about the internet to maintain a connection with their children. And they can afford the technology after spending twenty and more years in their careers.

These are parents. Their children are millennials and Generation X, many of whom are in their Connected Cocoons.  Or these are a generation who do not want children. Either way, the 40 to 60 age demographic has a greater freedom to venture from home… if given the opportunity. This group is feeling the effects of aging. They are seeking the fountain of youth, an easy way to keep fit.  And, unlike their children’s generation, they crave a social environment.   Their time for recreation is premised on their working hours, but they have at least two hours for recreation.

The 40-60 demographic is the largest of the age segments in curling. You must maintain their participation and expand it.

How does curling engage this 40-60 Demographic?

Select times based on the industry of participants. Retirees prefer afternoons. Bar and pub staff can curl before noon. Professionals prefer mid to late evening draws. Construction workers appreciate early evenings that accommodate their early morning starts.

Build in flexibility.  Firefighters, nurses, and police have shifts. Flexibility for them would be the opportunity for six person teams. Or consider leagues that play less frequently, say, every other week.

Spend in the lounge for extra comfort.  Thirty year old rugs and cloth couches are a turn-off, reminding suburbanites of their forgotten basement dens. Apartment dwellers are seeking a comfort zone that is open, yet casual.  Your facility must capitalize a ten year plan for rehabilitation in order to ensure sustainability. The patrons of this age group appreciate higher end accoutrements that are maintained in fit condition.

Include features that accommodate competition. Coach/team meeting areas enhance the competitive experience. Simple wide ledges at the glass allow for placing I-Pads and binders while coaches gesticulate. If you are building new, isolate seats at the glass from the lounge.  Stadium seating or a railing will work.

Provide fitness areas. A small area is enough – imagine small hotel fitness amenities.  Call it a warm up room that includes weights, stationary bikes, and/or treadmills. Mirrors provide feedback to the users. Market your club as a sport as well as a recreation.

Add technologies.  Wi-Fi is essential for the modern facility to allow business persons to finish their work remotely.  curling-scoreboard-no-notesElectronics games are a value-added component for relaxation for some.  When will curling introduce electronic scoreboards? Be the first in your city to introduce them! And, web based scheduling and reporting is a must. It must be interactive! It is easy and inexpensive to acquire from providers such as https://curlingclubmanager.com/ .   Players can post their own scores, allowing the club staff time to offer other benefits. People in business instinctively review schedules on line and enjoy seeing results on the same web page.  An interactive website also provides an alternative communication tool between players away from the business network.

Websites require maintenance.  Whether you offer CurlingClubManager.com or have your own website, there is a cost to update the information to remain current.  Your 40-60 demographic expects that.

Provide the surprise extras.  Like any other demographic, the 40 to 60 crowd appreciate recognition and freebies. When you acquire their membership applications, optionally ask for birth dates and anniversaries and businesses/occupations.  Then celebrate with them their anniversaries, significant events, and it could lead to more sponsorships.

Differentiate your facility rules.  Offer new methods of providing league play.  Some of this demographic are flying south in January.  Half year memberships would suit them.  Provide less frequent leagues at a reduced cost…not every recreational curler is as passionate as you and me (If you are reading TCN, you are passionate).

Create Special events. Mixed events provide date nights for those who have been restricted at home by raising children. And mixing events will provide for those without spouses. Since they might spend over $100 for dinner and a movie, budget your revenues in line with that and keep your costs below to effectively create a fundraiser. Link with other sports and cultural groups. It markets your facility and provides your members with expanded recreation opportunities.  Curling is a sport for life, so hockey players will be primed to move over during this age in their lives.

Promote relief from social isolation 

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/oct/12/neoliberalism-creating-loneliness-wrenching-society-apart?CMP=share_btn_tw

This article,Growing up with the Wired Generation, explains how millennials are creating cocoons for themselves out of the digital methods that their parents’ generation created and provided.  The parents are the 40-60 demographic and they want their children to become socially adept. Curling can provide both parents and children with exercise and a social environment. And the sport can be a family outing.

Curling is the perfect outlet for achieving a physically and socially fit generation. So your club must promote it as such!  Teach the 40 to 60 year-olds about curling’s attributes.  If they embrace your message, then they will educate their children.

For other demographics see also:

http://yorkurbanist.com/recreation/curling/the-missing-demographic-25-40/

http://yorkurbanist.com/recreation/curling/keys-to-sustainable-curling-youth/

For other curling articles refer to the column on the right “Categories” and click “Curling