November 26, 2009


I had an interesting question asked of me a week ago during a presentation to some sales executives about marketing to the Baby Boomer generation. The question was about communicating, "How do we talk to baby boomers and make ourselves understood?"  The question was about making a connection and creating a dialogue in which the generation Y sales person could speak to the Boomer on a level of equality and not be dismissed as being too young to understand.
This is a tricky one for the younger business professional trying to create a level of expertise with a generation that is usually arrogant and often dismissive of ideas put forth from what they think of as less experienced sources. Take some comfort in knowing that this generation gap has existed from the beginning of time and it is rarely personal. As boomers, we went through the same thing but what is the best approach for today's young marketer?
A few bits of advice:

  • stay away from techno-babble
  • don't TRY to impress with your superior knowledge (even when it's true)
  • connect information and facts with their effect on the customer (benefits)
  • listen to the comments and questions before replying (full of clues)
  • keep clarifying without "talking down"
The number 1 thing a gen Y salesperson can do is to be themself. Boomers, by and large, trust their own instincts and are very aware of someone putting on a fake personna. If they detect the lack of honesty or integrity due to "false airs," you are finished. I notice this quite often when talking to a salesperson with my wife. Often, she will ask a question and I find the salesperson (especially if he is male) will turn to me and answer the question - BIG MISTAKE, you have just taken the person who is most likely to make the decision out of the conversation. The decision she is most likely to make at that point is that we will not be buying from this person. So, be who you are and take your chances. You won't sell everyone anyway and you will walk right past sales by not listening to your prospect carefully and simply being who you are in the process.

November 25, 2009


I want to tell you about an important PBS special that is airing soon. I think every one of you should take the time to watch it.
It is called UNSTUCK, and in this new ninety-minute television program James S. Gordon, MD, founder and director of The Center for Mind-Body Medicine, brings to life his revolutionary book Unstuck: Your Guide to the Seven-Stage Journey out of Depression.The book and the PBS special start by asking a simple but profound question ...
Do you feel stuck?
Many of us do, at least from time to time, and in this television special Dr. Gordon provides a simple, yet extremely effective, seven-step method for getting unstuck. Whether you are caught in a mire of depression, stress, and anxiety, or are just a little confused, overburdened, or unhappy, this show will provide you the tools and techniques you need to free yourself from the bog of your thoughts and emotions and get unstuck once and for all.
As Dr. Gordon explains, when we are stuck it is an indicator "that our lives are out of balance." Rather than getting buried in these moments we can use them as "a wake-up call" to a journey "that can change and transform our lives."
Dr. Gordon's groundbreaking program, which he has successfully used in the U.S. and around the world, offers easy but powerful exercises that reduce stress and feel good, including "soft belly" and "shaking and dancing." One such exercise involves eating something small, such as a strawberry or a piece of chocolate, in a mindful way, to improve relaxation and happiness.
In his seven-stage program, Gordon discusses the benefits of:
  • Food and nutritional supplements
  • Movement, exercise, and dance
  • Psychotherapy, meditation, and guided imagery
  • Spiritual practice and prayer
The program will air nationally on PBS November 28th through mid-December. Check the link below to find show times in your area:
You can also see a preview of the show by going here:
If you have ever felt stuck-and almost all of you have-I strongly encourage you to take an hour and a half and watch this show. It has the power to transform your life.
I also urge you to pledge to PBS during the Unstuck show. If you do, you'll not only support your local Public Television station, but also contribute to the amazing work Jim Gordon and his colleagues are doing to use the Unstuck method to help populations in the US and abroad who are traumatized by war and natural disasters.
To your good health,
Mark Hyman, MD
This is cut and pasted from Dr. Hyman's email of yesterday and I find him a very reliable source of good health advice.  View his website here

November 20, 2009



I am currently writing and researching my next book about marketing to the Baby Boomer Generation and you could create some of the content. As part of my research, I am speaking to groups of salespeople in the Calgary area who are currently spending some, or all of their time marketing to people between the ages of 45 and 65. If you are part of a sales organization that is currently engaged in this process, I will share my research to date, along with my 40 years of sales experience in a 1 to 1.5 hour presentation. The book will be ready for release in mid-winter and I will begin a speaking tour shortly after, during which I will be charging in excess of $1,500.00 per engagement, for much the same content.

Benefits to the participants:
  • find out who the Boomers really are
  • what motivates them
  • how they spend their money
  • their concerns, fears, influences
  • retirement plans, career changes, attitudes
  • activities, advertising response
  • learn how to connect and gain their confidence
  • sales strategies, relationship building
  • the marketing "sweet spot"
  • segmentation, personality profiling
  • demographic and psychographic factors

Bonus Material:
  • a few "war stories" from the trenches
  • laugh with a genuine Baby Boomer
  • keys to increasing sales
  • questions will be encouraged and welcomed
  • free e-newsletter to participants

What's in it for me?
The questions and discussions during the presentation help me to focus the writing so that the book will help the marketing efforts of salespeople across the country.

This is an opportunity to learn about the Baby Boomer Generation from one of their own who will help financial, travel, insurance and other consultants along with realtors, bankers and business professionals to understand the largest demographic on the planet.
This presentation will make a significant difference in the confidence and the results of the participants.
Once the book is in print and the presentation begins to roll out at large conventions and meetings, the price will be over $1500.00. For a VERY limited time, from now until Christmas and subject to availability, the price for this presentation is only $249.00.
If this will benefit your organization, or another that you know of, then call Bob Bannon at 403-880-8264 or send me an email.
This offer will not be repeated, at this price, so act quickly to secure this unique, motivational and informative presentation for your sales force.

November 18, 2009


The Boomer generation is a unique demographic phenomena that has changed everything about the way history is unfolding. One of the biggest changes and challenges comes from the business community as they try and anticipate how almost 1/3 of North American consumers will move through the buying cycle along with the life cycle.  Here are a few interesting facts about the spending habits of Boomers:
Most Boomers have raised their children and now have more to spend on non-child related products and services but those with children still in post secondary schools spend 47% more than average on education. They also spend:

  • 11% more on men's clothing 
  • 13% more on women's clothing
  • 20% more on life insurance
  • 23% more on vacations
  • 50% more on housewares
information courtesy of Linda P. Morton Know 'em Sell 'em

November 15, 2009

The Case Against Retirement

The Case Against Retirement

Posted using ShareThis

I am always a little amazed when talking to generation X and Y people who assume that the baby boomer generation will stop working at age 65 or younger and then live on their investment income.  This thinking often prevents people in the financial industry from targeting people 50+ because they are afraid that their hard-earned new client won't be around long enough as a contributing customer.  Wrong! For a variety of reasons that are outlined in The Case Against Retirement link above, many of us will continue earning income and contributing to our nest egg for many years to come. We may work differently, we may pursue new kinds of work in the information industry, but a large number of us will continue to be working and contributing members of society for several decades to come.
What we forget is that the whole concept of retirement is only about 30 years old.  Take a look at the information in the link above.

November 13, 2009


Boomers have reached the age and stage in life when we are considering our legacy. We are beginning to wonder if we have done all that we can do. We are considering our current line of work, companies we are working for, friends, accomplishments and just about everything else that we can imagine.  We are realizing that we have 20+ years of generally healthy, active life ahead of us; we have some financial security, a lifetime of connections and experience, intellectual curiosity and soon, we will also have TIME.
In preparing a talk, speech or presentation, it is usually best to begin with the end in mind. What do I want my audience to be left with; what is the final piece of information, nugget or idea that I want to leave in their minds? It would be nice if we could turn life upside down a little bit and do the same thing - what is the final thing we want to know about our lives - at the end. What did we, in the end, stand for, how did we make a difference, what will we be remembered for?
It would be a shame to lie on our death bed and say or realize that we had not done those things we were meant to do. Inside each of us lies a passion, something that we really, really want to experience and we keep putting it aside until we have more time, more money, better health, the kids are gone, the house is paid for, yada yada, yada! Here's the bottom line, here's the end of my talk -
At the end, we can have results or we can have reasons...reasons don't count.
Here's the second "bottom line"  we don't know when the end will come.

November 12, 2009


Marketing to boomers has been the mainstay of business for almost 60 years. As the baby boomer generation ages and starts to enter the retirement era, there are many anomalies that begin to appear as "generation" begins to intersect with "age" and then if we overlay "personality type," the picture begins to get complicated.  Or it begins to clear if you are a marketing type who wants to fine tune your focus to find the potential customers that you can relate to with success.
I've been asked to present the case for boomers to a couple of groups of financial consultants next week and while my credentials come from the fact that I am a member of the Baby Boomer generation, my information and research has been coming from some incredibly talented and intelligent people who have been studying the issues of marketing and specifically marketing to generations and age groups. Information in blogs and websites about the pre-retirement era and the effect that boomers will have on the subject is beginning to build.
If you are interested in reading some of the information that I have been using as a resource then try several books like Freakenomics by Levitt and Dubner ( they have just released a new one which I haven't read yet), Boom by Brown and Orsborn which really deals with what I term the "marketing sweet spot," women over 50. Some of the best research that I have read so far is in a book called Know 'em Sell 'em by Dr. Linda Morton who also has a very good blog that has become "must reading" for anyone serious about target marketing.
On the other hand, if you have a group of people who would be interested in my take on the subject that will include some personal stories and examples of how marketing to boomers works, then please send me an email and we can talk. You can contact me directly here.

November 6, 2009


Eradicate Breast Cancer With Vitamin D?

Canada NewsWire

TORONTO, Nov. 4, 2009 (Canada NewsWire via COMTEX) --

Breast cancer risk 'virtually eradicated' by elevated vitamin D levels,researchers suggest.

Breast cancer is a disease so directly related to vitamin D deficiency that a woman's risk of contracting the disease can be 'virtually eradicated' by elevating her vitamin D status to what vitamin D scientists consider to be natural blood levels.
That's the message vitamin D pioneer Dr. Cedric Garland delivered in Toronto Tuesday as part of the University of Toronto School of Medicine's "Diagnosis and Treatment of Vitamin D Deficiency" conference - the largest gathering of vitamin D researchers in North America this year. More than 170 researchers, public health officials and health practitioners gathered at the UT Faculty club for the landmark event.
Garland's presentation headlined a conference that reviewed many aspects of the emerging vitamin D research field - a booming discipline that has seen more than 3,000 academic papers this calendar year alone, conference organizers said. That makes vitamin D by far the most prolific topic in medicine this year, with work connecting it with risk reduction in two dozen forms of cancer, heart disease, multiple scleroses and many other disorders.
Dr. Reinhold Vieth, Associate Professor in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology at University of Toronto, and Director of the Bone and Mineral Laboratory at Mount Sinai Hospital, organized the event in conjunction with Grassroots Health - an international vitamin D advocacy group founded by breast cancer survivor Carole Baggerly.
Baggerly implored the research group to take action and encourage Canadians to learn more about vitamin D and to raise their vitamin D levels.
An estimated 22,700 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in 2009, according to the Canadian Cancer Society's latest figures.
As much as 97 percent of Canadians are vitamin D deficient at some point in the year, according to University of Calgary research - largely due to Canada's northerly latitudes and weak sun exposure. Sunshine is by far the most abundant source of vitamin D - called 'The Sunshine Vitamin' - with salmon and fortified milk being other sources. Vitamin D supplementation helps raise levels for many as well.
Grassroots Health's "D-action" panel - 30 of the world's leading researchers on vitamin D and many other vitamin D supporters - recommend 2,000 IU of vitamin D daily and vitamin D blood levels of 100-150 nanomoles-per-liter as measured by a vitamin D blood test.
Vieth pointed out that natural vitamin D levels of mammals who live outdoors in sunny climates is higher than that - up to 200 nanomoles-per liter. And Garland, whose presentation was entitled "Breast Cancer as a Vitamin D Deficiency Disease" presented data showing that raising one's vitamin D status near those levels decreased breast cancer risk more than 77 percent.
'The Sunshine Vitamin' was once thought of only for bone health, helping the body process calcium. But more recent work has shown that all cells in the body have "vitamin D receptors" which help control normal cell growth. Additionally, Garland presented new evidence that low vitamin D status compromises the integrity of calcium-based cellular bonding within tissues, which when eroded allow rogue cancer cells to spread more readily.
Grassroots Health is trying to raise vitamin D awareness among Canadians. Despite epidemic-level vitamin D deficiency in Canada, fewer than nine per cent of Canadians have ever had their vitamin D levels checked by a professional and most who have do not know their vitamin D blood level.
SOURCE: GrassrootsHealth
CONTACT: or to set up an interview with Dr. Vieth, please contact: Michelle Di Rocco, (416)
360-6522 ext. 251 or
Copyright (C) 2009 CNW Group. All rights reserved.

I can't help myself here and I don't mean to demean the seriousness of this devastating disease, especially during Breast Cancer Awareness month but... is this why so many of us caring men advocate clothing optional beaches around the world?

November 5, 2009


Coffee brims with health benefits, researchers say

The Palm Beach Post, Fla.

Oct. 31--Drink up, coffee lovers. Not only is coffee aromatic and delicious, it's good for you.
Who says? None other than Harvard Medical School.
Once considered questionable for your health, it turns out that the beloved beverage is actually healthful in moderation. That means a few cups a day.
At about 20 cents per 6-ounce cup, coffee is a good deal if you brew it yourself.
Harvard researchers say drinking coffee may help prevent diseases such as:
Cancer: Some studies have found coffee drinkers have lower rates of colon and rectal cancers and are 50 percent less likely to get liver cancer than coffee abstainers.
Type 2 diabetes: Coffee is thought to contain chemicals that lower blood sugar because heavy coffee drinkers may be half as likely to get diabetes as those who drink little or no coffee. Coffee also may increase your resting metabolism rate, which could help prevent diabetes.
Parkinson's disease: Coffee seems to help protect men from Parkinson's disease, but not women. The difference might be due to estrogen, researchers say.
Heart disease: Coffee is not linked to the development of heart disease. In the past few years, Harvard scientists say, coffee has been shown to be safe even for heart attack survivors. Scientists think antioxidants in coffee may reduce inflammation and protect blood vessel walls.
Life span: Recent studies suggest that drinking coffee decreases the risk of premature death, especially in women. Women who drank at least five to seven cups a week had a death rate 26 percent lower than non-consumers, a large investigation by researchers in Spain and at Harvard Medical School found.
It's not only Harvard researchers who are touting the brew's benefits.
Last month, a study led by Neal Freedman of the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Md., showed that people with chronic hepatitis C and advanced liver disease who drank three or more cups of coffee a day cut their risk of the disease progressing by 53 percent.
Although caffeine might be considered the "active ingredient" in coffee, coffee is only 2 percent caffeine and 98 percent "other stuff," including more than 1,000 different compounds such as vitamins, minerals and amino acids.
It even contains fiber. Each cup contains from 1.1 to 1.8 grams of soluble dietary fiber, the kind that dissolves in water and helps prevent cholesterol from being absorbed by the intestines, according to researchers at the Spanish National Research Council in Madrid.
Do researchers have any words of caution? Yes -- although regular coffee drinking isn't harmful for most people, that might not hold true for pregnant women. Research has linked miscarriage to caffeine consumption of 200 milligrams or more per day. A typical cup of coffee has 100 to 150 milligrams, Harvard reports.
Of course, we like to be able to justify our morning addiction as healthful, when the truth may be we can't get moving without it!
Is it possible to be caffeine-addicted? Yes, University of Florida professor and director of toxicology Bruce Goldberger says.
"It is one of the most commonly ingested drugs worldwide. It is addictive. One example of that is if you consume a lot of caffeine, then you don't, you start to crave it. If you consume a lot of caffeine, and it is not working, then you need to consume more," Goldberger said.
Like anything, experts advise, moderation counts. Anyone who's ever had the jitters from drinking too much coffee knows that.

What can I add but the fact that coffee seems to get a bad rap for awhile and then we read something like this, but good news; no warning labels on a bag of beans, so far. And, in case you are interested, I think the best coffee in the world is Kona coffee and I accept bags of whole beans in the mail should you wish to send some...

November 4, 2009

...The season to be jolly

Three  men died on Christmas Eve and were met by Saint Peter at  the pearly gates.

"In honor of this holy season"  Saint Peter said,  "You must each possess something  that symbolizes Christmas to get into heaven."

The  first man fumbled through his pockets and pulled out a  lighter. He flicked it on. "It represents a candle," he  said.

"You may pass through the pearly  gates," Saint Peter said.

The  second man reached into his pocket and pulled out a set of keys.  He shook them and said, "They're bells."

Saint Peter said, "You may pass through the  pearly gates."

The third man started searching  desperately through his pockets and finally pulled out a pair of women's panties.

St. Peter looked at  the man with a raised eyebrow and asked, "And just what do those symbolize?"
The man  replied, "These are Carol's."

And So The Christmas Season Begins......

November 3, 2009


When I was younger, I could remember anything, whether it happened or not. -- Mark Twain

November 2, 2009


Baby Boomers are being dragged kicking and screaming into the world of social networking - well, not everyone is kicking and screaming since they are the fastest growing demographic on Facebook.  I know that many of you are still thinking that the whole idea of Facebook, MySpace, blogging, etc. is a fad but if you think back to 1995 - most people thought that the internet was a fad too.  I'm not promoting the company who created the enclosed video but the facts contained within are overwhelming.  Start your blog and send me your link - better still, link to my blog and start a conversation.