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Organizations honored for active-aging marketing campaigns

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Winners of ICAA Rebranding Aging awards announced at ICAA 2012

VANCOUVER--What do some forward-thinking marketers for libraries, retirement communities and fitness centers have in common, beyond their customer base? They are driving campaigns that take a fresh perspective on adults 50+—marketing their organizations to individuals who are engaged in life to the best of their abilities. Those organizations are winners of the 2012 International Council on Active Aging (ICAA) Rebranding Aging awards, which honor marketing campaigns in four major categories that present “positive, realistic views of aging,” said ICAA CEO Colin Milner. The awards will be presented at the 11th annual International Council on Active Aging Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana on December 1.

“The quality of this year’s submissions is stellar,” says Milner. “We’re seeing that, increasingly, marketers are not only understanding the older consumer, but are inspired to creatively engage them. Compelling videos, engaging content and authentic stories of ‘real people’ break stereotypes and attract more potential customers. ICAA is pleased to recognize these efforts and promote them as examples for others to follow.

The following organizations were honored for helping to rebrand aging by positioning this life stage in a realistic, uplifting way, rather than as a burden (highlights from judges included).


Gold:Messiah LifeWays—colorful, usable, authentic
Silver: Transforming Life after 50—content easily accessible in multiple formats
Bronze: Restart Retirement—credible content and stories in blog format

Direct mail

Gold: Atria Senior Living—effective use of postcards with compelling “real people”
Silver: Messiah LifeWays—concise, engaging content, visuals well applied
Bronze: Willow Valley Retirement Communities—effective “magazine”-style approach


Gold: Shannondell at Valley Forge— Living to Inspire title speaks to later life values
Silver: Willow Valley Retirement Communities— realistic photos tell story of an engaged and empowered population
Bronze: Life Guidance® Memory Care – Atria Senior Living—presents subject matter sensitively, reflecting a keen understanding and appreciation for target market's needs


Gold: Welcyon—fitness promoted as pathway to enjoying life
Silver: Eskaton—good use of authentic “thank you” notes to highlight positive attributes
Bronze: Atria Senior Living—“incentive” cookbook well conceived, produced, organized
The awards are part of ICAA’s Changing the Way We Age® Campaign (http://www.changingthewayweage.com), an ongoing movement to change society’s perceptions of aging and what it means to be an older adult in North America today.


ICAA received about 70 submissions from organizations throughout the United States and Canada. Awards were made by a panel of experts on the 50+ market. The criteria were as follows: Message and imagery resonates with the target audience and/or evokes positive image of aging (30%); call to action is clear and compelling (30%); ad layout and graphic standards are appealing and appropriate for the target market (20%); overall uniqueness and creativity (20%).

About the International Council on Active Aging (ICAA)
The International Council on Active Aging® is the professional association that leads, connects and defines the active-aging industry. ICAA supports professionals who develop wellness facilities, programs and services for adults over 50. The association is focused on active aging—an approach to aging that helps older adults live as fully as possible within all dimensions of wellness (i.e., physical, social, environmental, vocational, intellectual, emotional and spiritual)—and provides its members with education, information, resources and tools.

As an active-aging educator and advocate, ICAA has advised numerous organizations and governmental bodies, including the US Administration on Aging, the National Institute on Aging (one of the US National Institutes of Health), the US Department of Health and Human Services, Canada’s Special Senate Committee on Aging, European Commission, and the British Columbia ministries of Health, and Healthy Living and Sport.

ICAA launched the Changing the Way We Age® Campaign (http://www.changingthewayweage.com) as part of the organization’s efforts to change perceptions of aging and overturn ageist stereotypes.

For questions:

Colin Milner, CEO, ICAA
Toll-free: 1-866-335-9777 (North America)
Telephone: 604-734-4466; cell: 604-763-4595

Marilynn Larkin
Communications Director, ICAA

icaa 100 members