Book Short: Microtrends by Mark Penn

Mark Penn, the longtime Clinton pollster and advisor, has a new book out called Microtrends: The Small Forces Behind Tomorrow’s Big Changes. It’s a fun book — every few pages is a new tidbit gleaned from polls and demographic data. For example:

  • Splitters: A growing number of middle-class residents are shuttling between two homes, creating new communities and dynamics in the real estate market.
  • Sun Haters: Environmentalists, skin cancer survivors, and parents concerned about the impact the sun is having on our health.
  • Philo-semites: A growing number of people want to date Jewish men and women.
  • Sex Ratio Singles: With gay men outnumbering lesbians by approximately 2:1, the female-to-male straight sex ratio has tipped all the way to 53:47, leaving more women than ever single. No wonder they’re raising their own children and buying their own homes.
  • Classical Music Dads: Older men who are fathers in their 40’s and 50’s and taking on a larger role in the nurturing of their children and becoming an important factor in consumer culture for kids.

If you’re a data junkie, like quirky facts, or think that there’s something to the thesis that we can understand the future by understanding lots of little trends, I recommend this book highly.

3 comments on “Book Short: Microtrends by Mark Penn
  • Ben, this sounds like a great read. I share a similar fascination with data and I haven’t really done much personal reading to engage this curiosity (outside of Freakonomics and periodicals).

    Thanks for the post, this’ll go on my list.


  • This single woman has indeed bought her own home. Even though I’m responsible for the repair and maintenance around here, I find it preferable to dealing with landlords and their quirks.

    The above being said, I still want to read this book. I’m curious as to why other single gals have taken the homeownership plunge.

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