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it’s nice to be a demographic


kim on 9:04 am February 27th, 2007 / 1 Comment »

i observed this sensation last night thumbing through a catalog. sometimes it’s a comfort not to fight the grain, not to be so individual as to refuse to allow yourself the pleasure of receiving the efforts of people you’ll never know–these people, who are working day in and out to assess which daybed, rug, or wall hanging you’ll buy. of course we’re discussing money, so perhaps these supply-side people don’t care. on the other hand, as i (also) learned from a car commercial recently: “you’re our top priority because you’re the one in the driver’s seat.”

this leads me to a commercial that aired late during the academy awards. the commercial was for safeway’s organics line. a couple, both aryan and smiling, were sitting on a couch with blue and yellow tshirts. the tshirts had small writing on the chest of each actor.

the tshirts listed definitions (in the format of miriam webster) of the character these actors represented. i saw the commercial twice but didn’t look closely at the definitions until i saw, the second time, “intermediate yoga” on the woman’s shirt–this, in addition to something about her being funnier than she realizes.

since i am in the business of peddling peace, specifically the peace found through the practice of yoga, i became very interested in safeway’s message. is there enough of a demographic of “intermediate” 30-something yoginis (married to and/or dating and/or snuggling with blonde dudes on couches in broad daylight) to warrant this label on international TV with the oft-cited “billion people watching”? and if this is the case, does this woman represent a demograhpic of white, organic-eating, fair-trade-coffee-drinking, intermediate yoga practitioners out there? more to the point, as much as we in the yoga world may appreciate such marketing, how do you feel about having this particular woman-character represent your attempts to eat, love, and practice discovering union inside your self?

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One Response to “it’s nice to be a demographic”

  1. Well ask a geek, get a geek answer . . . according to research published in 2004 by Kalorama Information, the total market for natural and organic foods is expected to be $30B by 2014 and is experiencing a 9.4% compound annual growth rate. Pretty impressive.

    In addition, according to “The U.S. Affluent Market” published in 2005 by, the affluent serve as food product trendsetters. For example, the “low-carb trend was fueled by ‘white, affluent, well-educated and physically active’ consumers.”

    So, putting two and two together, an upscale yogini chick should be the perfect bridge (no yoga pun intended) between organic foods and trendsetting for the hoi poloi — whether or not she accurate represents any one of us.

    Seems to be a sound marketing effort, to me!

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