Trend Time: ​The Future of Veterans in the United States​ 

There are no heroes in our country greater than our military members, veterans, and their families. Brands all across the country honor their sacrifices, but in the years to come, the military population will see a significant change in demographics. Here’s what your brand needs to know in order to honor their service in the future. 

Meredith Cunningham Published: April 25, 2022

There are no heroes in our country greater than members of our military, our veterans, and their families. Brands all across the country honor their sacrifices with programs and events like Carry the Load, and spots run by organizations like Dignity Memorial  

These programs are great ways to celebrate our country’s heroes, however, according to an Economist/YouGov Poll, the general sentiment of Americans is that veterans deserve more than just Veteran’s Day to receive support. Nearly 71%​ surveyed said the government does not do enough to support military veterans. Even though the overall veteran population is declining, more effort should be made to support them.​ 

That’s where your brand can step in. There are more veteran-related holidays than you might expect – from Military Appreciation Month in May to National Veterans & Military Family Month​ in November, and many more in between, such as: 

  • National Salute to Veteran Patients, Week of February 14​​ 
  • National Vietnam War Veterans Day, March 29​ 
  • Women Veterans Day​, June 12  
  • Independence Day​, July 4​ 
  • National Hire a Veteran Day​, July 25​ 
  • Patriot Day, September 11​ 

But, it’s also important to note that in the years to come, The United States Department of Veteran Affairs is seeing significant shifts in gender, age, and ethnic demographics, which could affect certain aspects of programs like these. Here’s what your brand needs to know in order to honor military service and our veterans in the future.  

The Future Veteran Population​ 

According to the Department of Veteran Affairs, the veteran population has been steadily declining each decade. Currently, the estimated number of veterans alive today is 18 million. Veteran Affairs predicts that this population will further decline by 35% in 2046. Not only will this population decline, but the demographics of this group will also change with a significant shift in gender, age, and ethnic demographics.​ 

Currently, there are 2 million female veterans in the US, which makes up 11% of the veteran population. The number of female veterans is expected to increase to about 18% in the next 25 years. ​ 

The veteran population will be slightly younger ​as the post-9/11 veteran cohort grows, the average age of the veteran population is projected to get younger in the next 25 years. ​Though the overall population will continue to age, the number of veterans younger than 50 years old will increase from 27% in 2021 to 33% in 2046.​ 

Ethnic Demographics
Veterans are becoming more ethnically and racially diverse. Consistent with overall trends in the US, the number of veterans of non-Hispanic White descent is expected to decrease in 2046.​ Additionally:  

  • The number of Hispanic and LatinX veterans is expected to double from 8% to 16%​ 
  • There is projected to be a slight increase in the Black population to 15%​ 

Be In Good Company  

Team TEGNA is here to help your brand craft unique campaigns to honor this target audience through an unmatched suite of services and solutions that reach consumers across through linear broadcast, over-the-top streaming (OTT), and digital solutions. 

Leverage our network of 64 stations in 51 markets to reach potential customers from coast to coast by placing brand messaging alongside local news headlines, weather and traffic reports, and behind-the-scenes local sports coverage.  Click here to learn how we can help your brand reach its goals.  

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