Older divorced and widowed individuals enjoying settled urban lives
Bohemian Groove are older adults on their own. While a majority are never-married singles, nearly a third have been married and are now starting over as divorced or widowed individuals. As part of the growing wave of older singles, about two-thirds are between the ages of 46 and 65. Many have settled in second-tier cities - often in the Northeast or West in cities like Sacramento, Calif. and Harrisburg, Pa. - and choose to live in affordable apartments. With their average educations, they typically hold down modestly-paying jobs in the service sector. Although their neighborhoods are transient, where most members have been at the same residence for less than fewer years, they’ve managed to sink down roots quickly. They already have a large circle of friends and are active in community groups.
With most adults over 50 years old, these singles lead laid-back lifestyles. They’re done with the bar-hopping and club scene, they don’t troll health clubs for jogging partners and they’re not interested in taking singles’ cruises or Caribbean getaways. Many spend a lot of free time in their apartments enjoying music, cooking, making crafts and painting. If they go out to eat, it’s usually to a casual dining or bistro restaurant. These adults are still hungry for learning, and they often take adult education classes, though some also consider their courses a socially acceptable way to meet other graying singles.
In the marketplace, their low incomes and few income-producing assets make them value- conscious shoppers. They patronize discount department stores known for their wide selections and low prices. They drive small and mid-sized economy cars, typically buying used models made in the U.S. They also make a strong market for craft and hobby stores. They’re naturally late adopters for most technology products and they have little interest in conspicuous consumption, which is reflected in their traditional taste in clothes. Although they consider themselves to be informed consumers, they typically let their fashion-forward friends track down the hippest stores.
Nevertheless, Bohemian Groove prize their individuality - whether it’s in the mall or inside the election booth. They tend to be moderates who align themselves with neither major party and have mixed views on hot-button social issues. They are open-minded toward other cultures and lifestyles, and they cultivate friends from a wide variety of backgrounds. Many serve as influencers in their segment, particularly in the area of health and nutrition. They often prefer alternative medicine to traditional doctors. They watch their diet, read the labels on food and medical products, and make sure to buy only the freshest ingredients when they cook. On the other hand, they’re not complete purists. These busy multitaskers are fine with gulping down fast food when they’re running late for a class.
Bohemian Groove are also an eclectic media market. Many are information hounds who read a daily newspaper for the local news and job classifieds. They’re fond of music and keep their radios tuned to easy listening and golden oldies stations. They’re also fans of TV movies and police dramas. These consumers still haven’t taken to the Internet and rarely go online unless it’s to track down information about a company or medical condition; they rarely use the Internet to make a purchase.
Bohemian Groove are adults in transition. Mostly middle-aged and older, nearly half of the household heads are single, divorced or widowed. They’re predominantly white, have average educations - a mix of high school graduates and some college - and work in the service sector, particularly in jobs in health care, social services and the military. With relatively low paychecks, they tend to lead modest lives in their city apartments.
Nearly eight out of ten Bohemian Groove rent apartments, typically low-rise garden apartments and row houses of varying ages. Although they’re scattered across the country, they’re more likely to be found in the Northeast and West, especially in cities like Sacramento, Calif., Anchorage, Alaska, and Harrisburg, Pa. Housing prices are low in these unassuming neighborhoods - an average of less than $167,000 - but these residents don’t like to accumulate possessions, including homes, in case they get the urge to move on. Half have lived at the same address for fewer than three years.
Bohemian Groove lead relatively quiet and unassuming lifestyles. Many spend a lot of time in their apartments listening to music, cooking or perhaps playing a musical instrument. They may go out to eat at a restaurant like Romano’s Macaroni Grill or Red Robin. They take education courses and classes in painting and furniture refinishing. On the weekend, they like to take in a movie - especially a foreign film or documentary. For something completely different, they’ll check out a state fair. Although they like the idea of traveling abroad, many settle for domestic vacations.
With their modest finances, Bohemian Groove are known as price-sensitive shoppers. They tend to drive budget and economy subcompacts and mid-sized sedans, without any of the optional bells and whistles; used American models are fine with this crowd. They maintain that they rarely go shopping, but when they do, they typically wait for a sale. They prefer shopping at local stores to national chains, though they have high rates for patronizing discounters like Kmart, Family Dollar Store and Sam’s Club, as well as crafts retailers like Hobby Lobby and Michaels. Research shows that they’re brand-loyal, tech-shy and impulse shoppers but they’re often the last among their friends to hit a mall to check out a new store.
Bohemian Groove make a strong market for most media channels. These consumers like getting their local news fix by reading daily newspapers, where they check out the classifieds, food pages and TV and radio listings. They describe themselves as music fans who listen to radio stations, particularly those that play classic rock, easy listening and golden oldies. They also rely on TV to stay informed, tuning in to stations that feature news as well as movies and dramas. Among their favorite cable channels: Bravo, Lifetime, Oxygen and TNT. Aficionados of crime procedurals, they watch “CSI” in all of its variations at nearly twice the national average.
Bohemian Groove are proud individualists. In this segment, people have a much higher rate of considering themselves Independents than Democrats or Republicans, and their views on current issues are all over the ideological map. Members have high rates for supporting progressive social issues while at the same time espousing the superiority of traditional women’s roles. However, they’re not very loud in their political expression: most aren’t politically active, other than voting.
They may be on their own, but the solo members of Bohemian Groove work at maintaining a large circle of friends from a wide variety of backgrounds. They have a genuine interest in people and like to share opinions. They also cultivate their reputations as iconoclasts, unafraid of being unconventional and ever-ready to try something on the spur of the moment. They consider themselves influential trendsetters who are good at convincing others of their ideas and preferences.
Bohemian Groove like to take a leadership role among their peers, especially when it comes to health issues. They consider themselves well-informed when it comes to nutrition; they’re the kind of shoppers who read the labels on packages and buy the freshest ingredients when cooking. They’re tolerant of alternative medicine and trust homeopathic doctors. Although these busy people regularly indulge in fast food and frozen dinners, they maintain that they try to eat a balanced diet. When their penchant for sweets catches up to them, they admit that they’ll try any new diet.
With average incomes less than two-thirds the national average, Bohemian Groove qualifies as a weak financial market. Risk-averse and uncomfortable with banks and brokerage houses, they acquire few retirement, investment or credit products. They own few investments other than some short-term CDs, a money market account or shares in the company where they work; any securities they own are valued in the low five figures. To pay for routine expenses, they carry debit cards, charge cards and clothing store credit cards, rarely paying off their bills each month. These older households do appreciate insurance and buy both health and group life insurance at respectable rates. Fearful of going into debt, however, they resist any offers for loans.
Bohemian Groove have only modest interest in digital media. They’re unlikely to access the Internet for entertainment or social networking, but they will go online to look for a job, check out the latest lottery numbers, get sports scores and try their luck on a dating site. They like Websites that can provide them with local information, and they list simplyhired.com, sportsline.com, games.com and redbox.com among their favorite sites. Nevertheless, they’re still leery about privacy on the Web, and they rarely click on ads or make purchases.