Monthly Archives

June 2012

Young Men Receptive to Mobile Ads

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Insight Express research shows 18-29 year-old men are highly receptive to mobile ads compared to other smartphone users and rely heavily on these devices when shopping.


Men 18-29 are more likely to recall seeing mobile ads, feel more positive towards them, and more likely to consider them “new and different” compared to traditional and digital ads. Amazingly, 40% of them actually like seeing ads on mobile.


Additionally, more than half of these men report using their mobile to help them in stores. The activities they performed via mobile more often than women the same age include finding product reviews, looking for better prices, scanning barcodes, taking photos of products, and showing photos of products they wanted to salespeople. They also use their mobiles more often in stores considered the domain of women—malls, department stores and supermarkets—as well as convenience marts and electronics shops.


All this activity likely translates into a trend toward highly savvy shoppers, with a marketer’s best avenue for influencing their purchases trending strongly toward mobile ads.

Why Some Men are Like Peacocks

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A University of Minnesota study indicates men’s conspicuous spending is driven by the desire to have uncommitted romantic flings. Just as peacocks flaunt their tails before potential mates, men may flaunt flashy products (such as a Porsche) to charm potential dates. Notably, not all men favored this strategy – just those interested in short-term sexual relationships with women.


According to researchers, women found a man who purchased a flashy luxury car more desirable than the same man who purchased a non-luxury car. But although women found the flashy guy more desirable for a date, he was not preferred as a marriage partner.


Dads Driving the Shopping Cart

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Dads today are shopping for childcare products more than ever, and marketers need to catch up.


The Yahoo! study Digital Dads reveals huge percentages of fathers feel most advertising for children’s products ignores them. As a result, they do more research into childcare products than women, with 80% searching across a plethora of sources including the Internet.


Dads reportedly find shopping more enjoyable than women do, seeing it less as a chore and more as a way to demonstrate their abilities as parents and partners.


They also are more brand-conscious than moms, which makes advertising to them all the more important. Household and childcare brands have an opportunity to forge deep relationships with dads as they shop for these products—but only if they consider that dads want and need more information about products.

Get With the Shopping Program

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Once upon a time, guys would sit out on major household shopping decisions. Today’s men, however, aren’t just along for the ride—they’re drawing out the roadmap.


A survey from Jacobs Media found 67% of guys and 55% of women think “today’s male is more involved in shopping decisions than when I was growing up.” Men still trump women in categories traditionally dominated by men—alcohol, automotive-related, electronics, home improvement, investment, landscaping/gardening and sporting events—but 42% of men say advertisers “don’t get” the impact guys have on these and other purchasing decisions.


Men are strong users of loyalty/frequent shopper cards with 80% having at least one, and they lead the way in card usage for hardware, airlines, car rental, hotels, and electronics.


Increased participation in household purchases by men is likely to continue given changing gender roles in society. So keep the guys in mind when disseminating information about your brand.

Men’s Role as the Breadwinner Persists

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An Ohio State University study suggests that despite women’s gains in the workforce and an increase in stay-at-home dads, pressure to be the breadwinner largely remains on men. When married men experience unemployment and thus are unable to fulfill this traditional role, it subsequently influences both men’s and women’s decisions to end a marriage.


According to the study, an employed woman is no more likely to initiate a divorce than a woman who is not employed. But for a man, not being employed increases the chance his wife will initiate a divorce and the chance he will initiate a divorce. Even men who are relatively happy in their marriages are more likely to leave if they are not employed.


“Women’s employment has increased and is accepted, but men’s non-employment is still unacceptable to many.” As the current economy has left many men unemployed, we are likely to see a rise in divorce rates for these men.

Men Say Comedy is King

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Research commissioned by Comedy Central shows 88% of young men view their sense of humor as crucial to their self-definition. Seventy-four percent said “funny people are more popular,” and 58 percent said they send funny videos to make a “special impression” on others.


“We called them Comedy Natives,” said Comedy Central. “Comedy is so central to who they are, the way they connect with other people, the way they get ahead in the world. One big takeaway is that unlike previous generations, humor, and not music, is their No. 1 form of self-expression.”


The study also found than Millennials (generally considered the under 30 crowd) are “comfortable with uncomfortable truths,” meaning they see just about any subject as fit for humor. This separates Millennials from Generation X, who do not view humor as an important element of self-definition. This implies that although comedy can be an effective marketing tool with men, it requires a certain amount of tailoring if spanning multiple generations.

Don’t Forget About Eating and Sleeping

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Men may think about sex more often than women do, but a new study indicates sex is not the only thing on men’s minds. They think about all their biological needs more frequently than women do.


The median number of young men’s thoughts about sex was 19 times per day, compared to 10 thoughts about sex per day for young women. Men thought about food 18 times per day (15 for women) and sleep 11 times per day (8 for women).


This suggests males might be having more of these thoughts than women are or they have an easier time identifying the thoughts. “It’s difficult to know, but what is clear is it’s not uniquely sex that they’re spending more time thinking about, but other issues related to their biological needs, as well.”

Top Ten ‘Can’t Stands’ for Men

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While it may be okay to man to engage in certain activities, eHarmony finds these same characteristics are deal-breakers when a man considers a woman for his partner.


  • Lying:  Lies to anyone, especially to me.
  • Manipulative: Takes advantage of people.
  • Rude: Belittling, impatient or hateful to people in any situation.
  • Infidelity: Engages in sex outside a committed relationship.
  • Mean Spirited: Has a devious nature and is mean to others.
  • Poor Hygiene: Not clean.
  • Drugs: Uses illegal recreational drugs.
  • Anger: Can’t manage their anger, who yells, or bottles it up inside.
  • Depressed: Constantly unhappy about their life.
  • Undependable: Fails to come through and is unreliable.
  • Victim Mentality: Continually sees herself as a victim.

Social Media—Men’s Best Frenemy?

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A study called Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) by JWT found men are more affected by FOMO than women. FOMO is the feeling you’re missing out—that your peers are doing or knowing more than you.  Social media has put FOMO into overdrive because people become aware of happenings and information in real-time.


Men are more prone than women to FOMO when they see via social media that peers are: doing something they’re not (45% of men vs. 29% of women), buying something they’re not (32% vs. 15%), and finding out information before they do (34% vs. 22%).


Although studies show women are more engaged with social media, 33% of men said they turn to Facebook to alleviate FOMO vs. just 16% of women.  Facebook activities men are more apt to engage in to relieve FOMO include posting status updates and photos, shopping, telling friends about their purchases, and coordinating social plans.


FOMO is by no means a new phenomenon, but social media gives brands an opportunity to alleviate or prevent it by helping customers spread the word about their purchases.

Men Continue to Drive Hollywood Content

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USC’s Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism analyzed the top-100 grossing movies of 2009 and found men are the storytellers and women are for looking at, no change from a similar analysis of 2008 films.


Among speaking characters, 33% were female and 67% male. In terms of appearance, women were far more likely than men to wear sexy clothing (26% versus 5%) and to expose skin (23% versus 7%).


Mean also dominate behind the camera, with only 4% of directors and 14% of writers female. Movie content was noticeably impacted by the director’s gender. In movies directed by women 48% of the characters were female; in movies directed by men, less than one-third of the characters were female.


It looks like movies will continue to be a great forum for reaching male audiences.