Instead of dumbing down the technology, educate the consumer!

By Steve Moran

This story in Marketing Daily on December 4, pained me: AT&T’s Digital You Program Teaches Calif. Seniors.  There is good news though . . . it could still be us!

The Story

AT&T has figured out that seniors represent a huge market opportunity for tablets and smartphones. They also know that while most seniors are online, most feel a bit overwhelmed by their personal devices, if they have them or intimidated if they don’t.

To combat this, AT&T has created a series of workshops that include topics like how to use mobile devices.

Massive Ageism

Over the last four or five years we have watched company after company, including AARP, develop the next “great” dumbed down tablet for seniors. Even now you can find at least three companies making this offer. I expect all three to ultimately be added to the heap of failed ideas.

Let’s face it, out of the box tablets are just not that hard to use. Today, with respect to seniors and technology, there are two groups.  One group is interested in using technology and learning; they’re fully capable of using an ipad or Android tablet. The other group is either so overwhelmed by technology or uninterested in technology, it does not matter how simple the device, they are not going to use it.

The Opportunity

The opportunity to help seniors and quite likely their families learn how to more effectively use technology is a huge opportunity. Imagine holding ipad and iphone classes once a month for residents, prospects and family members. You would provide a meaningful reason for people to come into your community. You would provide a real service to seniors and who knows . . . you might get some move-ins.

Maybe you could even get someone from AT&T to come teach the class.