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VROOM! VROOM! HARLEY-DAVIDSON LOOKS TO CUSTOMERS OF THE FUTURE: WOMEN, BLACKS, HISPANICS

Marketers across the country have felt the unprecedented  effect of the maturing Boomer generation, for better and for worse. One such  company is Harley-Davidson. While Boomers single-handedly transformed  Harley’s rumbling, lumbering bikes from countercultural totems into American
icons, we have to ask: How much longer can Harley rely on a customer base that is rapidly approaching 60?  Changing demographics are forcing the Milwaukee, Wisconsin-based company to seek new customers among Women, Blacks, and Hispanics. Joanne Bischmann, vice president of marketing at Harley, admits, "The demographics are changing," though she insists the change isn’t as dramatic as some have suggested. "But that doesn’t mean there aren’t other populations we don’t want to tap into."  To reach out to the Black community, Harley has begun sponsoring Tom Joyner, an
African-American Radio host whose program is heard by as many as 8 million U.S. listeners. Harley is also advertising during this year’s March Madness and is sponsoring the Roundup, an African-American version of the annual gathering of bikers in Sturgis, South Dakota.  To reach younger Hispanic
men, the company is participating in low-rider shows and advertising in Hombre and Fuego — two Latino men’s magazines. To reach Women, it’s putting a four-page insert into Jane, Allure, Glamour, and two other Conde Nast magazines, featuring what Bischmann says are "real women riders." It’s also
hosting garage parties for women — much like the get-togethers that Tupperware, Avon, Mary Kay, and other U.S. direct marketers have used to target women successfully for decades.  (Source: Retail Wire)

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