MySeniorCenter Fun Facts

Wednesday, June 1st, 2016

Last month, we explored the concept of market reach and how a variety of community metrics can influence each Center's reach. Market reach, which can be summarized as the percentage of your area's seniors that you are serving, is an important statistic when comparing the Center to other community organizations. Across the Network, the average reach was 7.67%, although it varied significantly based on different community characteristics. This month we're going to look at how market reach can be influenced by different Center characteristics. We'll investigate how lunch frequency, the cost of membership, average member age, and other dynamics can impact market reach.

Let's have a look.

Welcome to...Fun Facts - the Market Reach - Part 2 Edition


back to top

It Must Be The Home Cooking!

Lunch is one of our favorite things AND one of our favorite Center activities to study. Here we wanted to understand if there was a correlation between the frequency of a congregate meal (how many meals served per week) and a Center's market reach.

Centers that serve 4 or more meals per week are above the Network average of 7.67% market reach. There are 85 Centers across the Network that provide 2 or more congregate meals per day! They have an exceptionally high market reach percentage.

Mind, Body and Soul

Program diversity has been a hot topic at the recent regional conferences we've attended, so we wanted to drill into two specific program categories: Fitness/Exercises and Art/Culture/Music to understand how those impact market reach. For both categories, we looked at the percentage of events that fall into each category per Center, grouped those into ranges and then looked at the average reach within each range. Sounds confusing but the graphs paint a nice picture.

There are almost two separate trend lines that could be drawn on this graph! When fitness makes up 21 - 40% of the overall program offerings, the market reach is at its peak. However, once you get beyond 40%, it drops off significantly. So we can summarize that having about 1/3 of your programs dedicated to fitness/exercise is a recipe for success.

Although the Art/Culture/Music segment has been growing over the past two years, it still makes up a fairly small piece of the program pie (7% on average). In fact, this category really doesn't move the needle very much in terms of market reach until you get to over 30% of the total program offering - and there are only a handful of Centers where the percentage is that high.

Money Trees

Event/Program fees and Membership fees are probably the two biggest areas of discussion at board meetings and regional conferences. If you've never charged for anything it can be really hard to start. If you don't charge for things, it can be really hard to make ends meet. And then there's the question of how MUCH to charge for things. Here's what the Network has to say about it:

For those Centers that charge for events, the above graph shows the average price point and the market reach associated with the range. For Centers charging on average $3.01 - $7.50, their market reach is higher than those that charge more or less than that range. It is also higher than those Centers that do not charge anything for their events (7.2% on average).

Nearly twice as many Centers charge a membership fee now as they did three years ago when we first did this analysis. Of those that charge an annual or lifetime fee, the sweet spot is in the $21 - 80 range. Yes, that's a big range! Those Centers charging $61-80 have an incredibly high market reach of 9%.

I Am Woman

The gender ratio and average age of participants also has a relationship to market reach. The data tells us that more women than men go to Centers. In fact, the average across the Network is nearly 70% women, or a 70/30 split between women and men. However, in terms of market reach, the closer to a 55/45 split the better. Centers who have between 55 and 67% female participants have an average reach of 8.8%.

Age is also an important factor. The ideal average age range is 70-79. Centers in that range have a higher than average market reach.

Next Month

In honor of summer vacations, the focus of next month's issue will be Trips. If there is anything in particular about trips that you'd like us to research, please let us know: Fun Facts Trips Issue.