The older consumer as innovator: does cognitive age hold the key

Szmigin, Isabelle and Carrigan, Marylyn (2000). The older consumer as innovator: does cognitive age hold the key. Journal of Marketing Management, 16(5) pp. 505–527.



In the light of changing demographics and the increasing importance of the older consumer to marketing, this paper seeks to identify whether some older consumers may be identified as more innovative in their consumption than others. As a first step towards a fuller understanding of these consumers, the authors suggest using and comparing two measures, one related to domain specific innovative behaviour and the other concerned with the cognitive age of consumers. It was proposed that those consumers with a younger cognitive age might be more likely to be innovative in their consumption behaviour than others of the same chronological age. In this study the authors looked at innovative behaviour towards holiday destinations. The authors found no evidence of a younger cognitive age being linked to domain-specific innovativeness and suggest that this could be due to older consumers becoming increasingly ageless in their consumption behaviour.

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