MySeniorCenter Fun Facts

Monday, May 2nd, 2016

How many of your area's seniors are you serving? This is an important statistic to use to compare yourself to other town/city services (like schools and recreation facilities) for budgetary purposes. In this issue we're going to look at market reach (a calculation that shows the percentage of your available market that you have reached) using different census metrics and also describe how you can do this for your own Center. Keep in mind that these metrics are about your community, not your participants.

Let's have a look.

Welcome to...Fun Facts - the Market Reach edition


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Start Me Up!

In order to determine a starting point, we first determined the total reach across the Network.

Total Market Reach: 7.67%

Total Market Reach is the percentage of all seniors in areas served by Centers in the MySeniorCenter Network who had an interaction at a Senior Center in 2015. That figure is a slight decline from 2014, which had a total reach rate of 7.77%. The total number of seniors served per Center increased from 2014 to 2015, but the total number of seniors living in each community increased at a slightly higher rate.

Location, Location Location

As indicated above, the total market reach for Centers in the MySeniorCenter Network is 7.67%. That means that Centers are interacting with 7.67% of all available seniors within their market. If we reduce the notion of "reach" to just the zip code or postal code in which the Center is located, the market reach jumps to nearly 18.83% That's impressive - nearly 1 in 5! When seniors need to travel into a different zip or postal code, the reach drops to 4.2%. In other words, people within their own zip or postal code are almost 5 times as likely to go to the Center as people who have to travel. Food for thought as we ponder regional Centers...

Welcome To Wherever You Are

Speaking of location, we were interested in learning if there are geographic differences in reach, so we used our regional breakout:

City Mouse, Country Mouse

Geographic location is one way to view this, but population density and proximity to cities may be a better indicator for comparison purposes. The following graph shows the market reach by metropolitan status. For a description of the different designations, click here.

The lower the population density, the higher the market reach.

Pomp And Circumstance

Questions about educational attainment are captured in the census and summarized in several ways. For this graphic, we showed the percentage of people in an area who have a bachelor's degree or higher as "Percent With Degree".

Remembering that the average market reach across the Network is 7.67% (the yellow line on the graph), all but the least-educated (< 20% with a degree) fall right around or above the average. This tells us that Centers are more successful (i.e. have a greater reach) in communities with a high percentage of citizens with a college degree.

Can't Buy Me Love

We next explored income range for the community. For our analysis, we used per capita income (average income per person; total income divided by total population). This next graph does NOT reflect the income of members who go to the Center necessarily, but rather the average for the community.

The trendline shows that as per capita income increases, market reach increases (generally). The interesting takeaway here is that those Centers serving communities with less than $22,000 per capita income have the lowest reach. Those are potentially the people with the greatest need, but yet we aren't able to reach a large percentage through the traditional Senior Center.

Next Month

All of the statistics and charts in this issue are related to community characteristics that can influence market reach. Next month we'll 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. Should be fun. Have a good month!