Marketers Setting Sights on the Obese

Obesity is more prevalent in the U.S. than ever before, and marketers are taking notice.  Many are actively changing their strategies to create products and messages that appeal to this segment of the population. 

According to NielsenHealth, U.S. households with at least one obese member spend 9 percent more than the average American household on over-the-counter medications, 10 percent more on health and beauty care products, and almost 17 percent more on total medications and remedies. 

Obesity sufferers tend to live in low-income households, with incomes of less than $20,000/year, and are more likely to be middle-aged (45 to 64 years old).  These households tend to be located in less affluent towns and rural areas (39 percent). 

On average, households with obese members are more willing to buy generic or private label brands. They also purchase 20 percent more low calorie carbonated soft drinks than the average U.S. household, and are more willing to buy prescription drugs from outside the U.S. in order to save money.

As marketers turn their attention to this once-overlooked demographic, Americans are also turning an eye inward to examine the causes of the country