While demographic change occurs slowly, marketers can begin to see indicators of potential change by identifying small trends that may suggest a larger shift over time. By paying close attention to these trends organizations can prepare their long-term marketing strategy to be ready when the shift becomes more apparent.
To illustrate how a marketer may respond, let’s consider the demographic characteristic birthrate. In some countries the overall birthrate is declining while the average age of the population is growing (i.e., people living longer). For a company targeting the youth market with sporting products this trend may suggest that in coming years they will see a shrinkage in demand for their products within the youth market as the population of this market declines. On the other hand demographic data may signal to the company that another market (i.e., older market), which they may not have previously targeted, may hold potential for new products. If it is predicted that the shift will occur over several years the marketer can slowly move into the new market by offering products geared toward older adults.