Tag Archives: Census data

Does your advertiser know the shifting demographics of their customers?

One of the most critical parts of the sales call is the fact-finding stage.  And an important part in that effort is to clearly identify whether the advertiser truly knows the demographics of their customers.

For any business, demographics are an important tool in doing business effectively, but in many ways the traditional profile of those buyers is shifting dramatically.

For example, parts of the Annual Social and Economic Supplement to the Current Population Survey from the US Census Bureau identified one key shift American households are getting smaller — and are predominantly headed by older adults.

Here are some other factoids your potential client may not know:


  • The average population per household now stands at 2.55, down from 3.67 in 1948.
  • Much of that decline is attributable to the growth in 1-person households, which have almost quintupled in number from 1960, and now account for 27% of all households.
  • The proportion of households headed by white non-Hispanic adults stands at 69% this year, down 8% from 75% in 2000
  • Households headed by 30 to 44 year-olds has plummeted from a peak of 34% in 1990 to just 26% this year (effects of aging of the Baby Boomers).
  • 39% of households are headed by adults aged 45-64.


  • Data shows that the percentage of households headed by adults aged 75 and older has grown from 6% in 1960 to 10% this year.
  • More than half of householders 75 and older live alone as of this year.   That compares to less than one-quarter of householders less than 30 years old.

Married, or not:

  • There are now 7.8 million couples living together without being married, more than double the 2.9 million from 1996.
  • Married households make up 49% of all households, down from 71% in 1970.
  • 52% of married couples have both husband and wife working outside the home. That’s down from 56% in 2000.


  • The percentage of stay-at-home parents who are fathers has grown from 1.6% in 1994 (76,000) to 3.6% this year (189,000).
  • Among married-couple parents with children  younger than 15, the percentage with stay-at-home mothers is estimated to be 24%.
  • 85% of single-race Asian children live with 2-parent families (whether married or not). That proportion drops to 77% among      single-race white non-Hispanic children, to 66% of Hispanic children, and all the way to 38% of single-race black children.

As you can see, some of these changes are significant, and I’m not sure most business owners are aware of them.  Those that do understand they may now have to tailor their advertising message differently such as highlighting special services or features, or even consider different artwork or photography to better match, or even cater to, these shifting demographics.

Do these businesses know that the goal posts may have shifted on them??