The Golden Bachelor and The Baby Boomer Awakening: Why Media Took So Long to Recognize Their Value

It's taken a while, but the media is finally catching on to the over-50 demographic. Here's why this age group is a powerhouse to be recognized.
Prime Women | Golden Bachelor Wedding

When Gerry Turner selected his bride-to-be from the final contestants of “The Golden Bachelor,” a whopping 6.1 million people tuned in to see who the lucky lady would be. That wasn’t only a season-high, but it turned out to be the most-watched episode of any series in the “Bachelor” franchise since 2021. Not only that, but when “The Golden Bachelor” premiered this past September, it had the biggest debut since 2021, with 4.6 million viewers watching it live. That’s a lot of reasons for Gerry and his now wife, Theresa Nist, to say I do in front of a viewing audience. And, it’s a lot of reasons why ABC should take note of that particular demographic.

For many years, the media landscape has been dominated by a fascination with youth culture. From advertising campaigns to entertainment industries, the spotlight often shines on the latest trends, the newest faces, and the emerging generations. This obsession with the young and the new left a significant generation, the Baby Boomers, largely overlooked.

In fact, Prime Women Media was born after the founders recognized several years ago that their generation of women over 50 had become nearly invisible in all media, particularly television. However, with “The Golden Bachelor” surpassing everyone’s expectations with 4.6 million live views and 11.68 million in delayed multi-platform streaming, there has been a shift in perception as media outlets begin to recognize the immense value and potential of this generation. According to Porch Group Media, Baby Boomers’ combined spending power is $548.1 billion annually, making it the highest of any generation.

Gerry Turner and Theresa Nist
PHOTO: JIM WRIGHT

But why has it taken so long for the media to recognize the value of this age group? One of the primary reasons for the delayed recognition lies in ageism. It is a pervasive issue in the media industry, leading to the marginalization of older individuals, particularly women. There is a societal obsession with youth and beauty, which often results in the exclusion of older women from media coverage and opportunities.

Demographics also played a role. Initially, this generation was so large and influential that they shaped the cultural landscape in their youth. However, as they aged, their dominance waned, and media outlets shifted their focus to younger, more diverse audiences. This change led to a neglect of the Baby Boomer generation, which no longer held the same economic and cultural sway.

The media often perpetuated stereotypes and misconceptions about Baby Boomers, which further hindered their recognition. These stereotypes portrayed them as technologically challenged, resistant to change, and out of touch with contemporary issues. Such portrayals not only misrepresented this generation but also discouraged the media from exploring their unique perspectives and contributions.

One of the turning points in the recognition of Baby Boomers’ value by the media has been their economic power. As this generation continued to work and accumulate wealth, they became a lucrative target for advertisers. Media outlets began to realize that ignoring Baby Boomers meant missing out on a substantial portion of consumer spending. This realization has led to a renewed interest in catering to this demographic.

Women drinking wine and enjoying friendship at an outdoor patio

TV network executives who said in the past that younger viewers will not watch older actors have been disproven by many shows, but most recently by “The Golden Bachelor,” which had huge viewership among younger as well as older adults. This major hit series, which stars mature women, shows the potential for Prime Women Network, which will feature women 50+ in every single program.

Baby Boomers have played pivotal roles in shaping the world’s history, politics, and culture throughout their lives. From civil rights movements to technological innovations, this generation has been at the forefront of transformative events. As they continue to engage in various spheres, their stories, wisdom, and achievements are finally being recognized and celebrated.

The media landscape is dynamic and constantly evolving. In recent years, there has been a growing acknowledgment of the need for diversity and inclusivity in media representation. This shift in cultural dynamics has prompted media outlets to reevaluate their approach and recognize the value of embracing a wide range of perspectives, paving the way for Prime Women TV Network, which will showcase programming created by and for women over 50.

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