News Segment


May 30, 2004

ST. LOUIS – Energizer Holdings Inc. is appealing to the rock ‘n’ roll sensibilities of baby boomers by enlisting 1980s rocker Pat Benatar to boost sales of hearing-aid batteries.

“Our generation has helped shape American culture, especially since we’re the first to be raised on rock ‘n’ roll,” Benatar says in a brochure for Energizer’s new marketing campaign, “It’s Hip to Hear.”

“From Aerosmith to the Rolling Stones, our music defines us, but all those years of rockin’ are beginning to take a toll,” she says.

Mini-batteries used in hearing aids are just 8 percent of Energizer’s total sales, but the St. Louis-based company sees a potentially huge growth market, said Ernie Petrus, director of sales and marketing for Energizer Miniature Batteries.

Benatar, 51, does not need a hearing aid, but Energizer is betting that she will break the stereotype associated with wearing one, Petrus told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch in Friday’s editions.

Matt Thornhill, founder of the Boomer Project, a Richmond, Va.-based consulting firm that helps companies reach the over-50 market, said Energizer’s choice of Benatar is “fabulous.”

“Boomers buy eyeglasses by the tens of thousands,” Thornhill said. “As they start to lose their hearing, I don’t think they’ll have a reluctance to (buy) hearing aids.”

Benatar is known for such hits as “Love Is a Battlefield,” “Hit Me With Your Best Shot” and “Invincible.”

Courtesy of Associated Press