On Trend Watch
Some might think Mark J. Penn has enough to do - what with working as chief strategist for Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign and serving as worldwide CEO of the public relations giant Burson-Marsteller.
But now Penn has a new endeavor: author.
His book, "Microtrends" offers a fascinating glimpse of the world as Penn sees it, identifying 75 new demographics based on countless sources. Penn - the pollster who noticed "soccer moms" in the 1990s - now sees mini groups everywhere. Ever heard of "wordy women"? That's Penn's term for one work trend. "Women are on the verge of taking over word-based professions, like journalism, law, marketing, and communications," he writes.
Cougars - everyone knows that is the term for older women who date younger men. According to Penn, they're on the rise, with nearly 3 million couples involving a woman six years older than the man, up from fewer than half a million in 1997.
New Luddites? Those are some 70 million Americans who have not entered the Internet age, otherwise known as "Tech-Nos."
Modern Mary Poppinses? They are college-educated nannies, whose salaries are now on the rise.
Late-breaking Gays? These are, Penn says, the two million or so people who were once married to members of the opposite sex.
And Hillary haters? That is not in his book. But you get the feeling, reading his material, he knows where they are.
--Anne E. Kornblut
Washington Post editors
September 7, 2007; 2:04 PM ET
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