Monthly Archives

July 2012

Men and Ads…It’s Complicated

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A report by AdAge finds men have moderate praise for TV advertising, saying TV ads provide them with: useful information about new products and services (54%), useful information about bargains (46%), and meaningful information about the product use of other consumers (40%). A lot of guys (47%) even say TV ads are funny.


But there’s a flip side; 63% also say TV ads are repeated too often and 50% say ads appear at inconvenient times. Even worse, the two platforms marketers spend the most resources on-TV and internet-are where men are most likely to be skeptical; around one-third say both TV and internet ads have no credibility.


Millennial men say they pay considerable attention to ads in shopping malls, followed closely by ads in medical offices and bars or pubs. Gen X and Baby Boomer men also notice ads in malls and medical offices, but to a lesser degree. Millennial men are the most likely to be interested in watching video clips on their phones, but 65% say phone ads are annoying. Print ads get the highest marks from older generations.


The report notes that while older men prefer older media and youth flock to the internet, the picture is actually more complicated. They conclude men value advertising according to the benefits offered by the particular medium, and adjust their attention accordingly.

Funny Beats Frugal in Advertising

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Global consumer spending is projected to exceed $450 trillion by the end of the decade. With so much at stake—and many markets continuing to face tough economic realities, how do advertisers reach and resonate with an increasingly diverse, demanding and connected audience? Nielsen conducted a study of advertising effectiveness using 4,000 ads from before, during and after the “Great Recession” to find out if the economic climate and subsequent attitude shifts have impacted responsiveness to creative tactics. Among the major findings:


  • Humorous ads have consistently resonated best with viewers, regardless of the economy or year.
  • During the recession, there was a notable lift in effectiveness of sentimental and value-oriented ads.
  • Ads focusing on product features and promotion/price did not resonate with viewers even during tough economic times.
  • The performance of narrative and sentimental ads has improved since 2006.

Hispanic Millennials are Different

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Viacom says major differences exist between adult Hispanic Millennials (18-29 year-olds) and Hispanics in their thirties with the main source of difference being where they were born. Marketers should take note of these differences and create somewhat different pitches for each generation. Other ways Hispanic Millennials are different from thirty-something Hispanics:


  • Two-thirds prefer to speak English in their everyday lives; Hispanics in their thirties prefer to speak more Spanish.
  • More open to trying new brands and have a greater tendency not to decide what they want before going shopping.
  • More likely to say they love to buy new gadgets and like to be the first to have the latest technology.
  • More likely to use the internet to download music files; watch videos, TV programs, or movies; play games; watch sports; and listen to internet radio.
  • More active social media users; 70% of Hispanic Millennials use social media vs. 55% of thirty-somethings.

Millennial Guys Rescue Style

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Millennial guys are putting a lot of effort into looking good these days, says youth researcher YPulse.  It’s not that guy style doesn’t exist — there was the “Miami Vice” look of the 80s, the grunge look of the 90s, and the metrosexual craze of the 00s — but now guys are pursuing fashion by curating unique looks, rather than just copying what they see on TV.


They’re finding inspiration everywhere, from blogs to magazines to social media. Millennial men are a knowledge-hungry generation looking for information on their passions anywhere they can find it, and style is no different. Several shuttered men’s fashion magazines are coming back to newsstands as publishers realize men are actively seeking information about style.


It’s also easier than ever for young men to create their own look. They’re avid online shoppers and can research, track down, and buy just about anything these days, no matter where they live. Sneakers, t-shirts, chains, sweaters, hats — if they want it, they can have it in their hands a few days later.

Keep It Short for Affluent Men

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Luxury marketers should create separate digital campaigns for affluent females vs. affluent males because these groups absorb online marketing differently and have different online behaviors, says Luxury Daily.


Women are more likely to interact with a brand via social media, as evidenced by the female-dominated Pinterest, while men use the Internet to research a brand and have a tendency to discover things online on their own.  In addition, affluent males want their banner ads short and to-the-point and also enjoy interactivity and video.


Brands looking to target men should incorporate a few key things into digital advertising and online marketing campaigns.


  • Men want to see solutions to their problems via digital advertising and marketing. For example, if a man is looking to buy a cardigan, luxury marketers should show him a few ways to wear it as well as details about the materials and craftsmanship.


  • Men favor a more a more humorous or status-oriented approach and spend less time on sites, so they need to be grabbed quickly with a short brand message



Have Website, Will Watch More TV

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A comScore study examined how consumers use TV, Internet and Mobile alone and in combination to consume “media brands” (i.e. 4 broadcast and 6 cable TV networks). The research found three distinct groups: TV Only (72%) who use a brand’s media content on TV but do not access content on digital platforms; Digital Only (11%) who consume media brands’ content on mobile and/or Internet but not on TV; and Multi-Screen (17%) who access content via two or more platforms (TV + Internet or TV + Mobile).


When looking at propensity indices by gender, male and female audiences appeared equally likely to be Multi-Screen, TV and Digital-Only users.


The study found the two groups that include TV in their media consumption spend the majority of their time on this platform, but the Multi-Screen group consumes 25% more minutes on the TV platform than TV Only. Thus the fear that online would cannibalize TV time appears unwarranted.

The New Bathroom Reader

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A Yahoo! survey among persons age 18-64 aimed to find how and where tablet owners use their devices and just how important they are. The study revealed that one-third of men frequently take their tablets into the bathroom, with half emailing or reading the news while in the bathroom and one-fourth sending instant messages to their friends.


Other findings:

  • 91% of people use their tablet while in bed;
  • 25% of women would give up sex for their tablets; and
  • 15% would give up their car to keep their tablet.

Hispanic Millennials Rule Social Media

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If your brand is looking to connect with young Hispanics, social media is the platform for engagement. According to Simmons almost 75% of Hispanics 18-29 use social media, with nearly half of these checking in at least once a day.


Hispanics in this age group also are savvy shoppers who enjoy sharing their experiences about products and brands. About a quarter say social media is a way to tell people about companies and products they like, and one-in-five post ratings or reviews for other consumers. They also carry what they learn online into their lives offline — nearly 40% say they talk about things they see on social sharing sites in face-to-face conversations. Thirty percent of these consumers also follow their favorite brands on social networking sites.


There are a couple of key differences in social media between Hispanics 18-29 and Hispanics in their thirties. Only 56% of thirty-something Hispanics use social media and on 34% check in at least once a day; they also are less likely to follow their favorite brands on social media (19%). But compared with Hispanic Millennials, Hispanics in their thirties are more likely to make purchases online and research them heavily online beforehand.

Tablets Take On TV

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Tablet devices have emerged as the leading alternative to television for viewing long-form content according to a study by Viacom. Among tablet owners ages 8-54, Viacom found 15% of time spent watching full-length TV shows occurs on tablets. Comedy and Music are the top genres viewed on tablets, but on TV the top genre viewed is Reality followed by Drama, Science Fiction and Sports.


The study found tablet users fall into four distinct segments:

  • Power Trippers (18%) – Younger, mostly male, love their tablets and use them for everything.
  • Happy-Go-Lucky (28%) – Light users, view tablets as a source of entertainment.
  • Cool & Efficient (23%) – Frequent users, rely on tablets to be useful above anything else.
  • Proceeding with Caution (31%) – Lightest and least technologically-savvy, stick to basic activities.


While tablets provide many benefits, most owners are not ready to dump their smartphones, laptops or gaming consoles. The majority (65%) would replace their laptops before their tablets because tablets lack work functionality, and 77% would replace their iPhone before their iPad.

Not Just Bringing Home the Bacon

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Men in the kitchen are nothing new, but men as everyday home cooks seem to be reaching a boiling point. Men have typically made guest cameos as cooks—for example, taking on outdoor-grilling duties—but today men are simply playing a larger role in meal planning and preparation. Nearly half of men 18-34 participate in the decision about what gets served at home, according to SMG and The Boston Consulting Group.  And a University of Michigan study of Gen X found “men are surprisingly involved in shopping for food and cooking”; they’re not yet on par with women, but they cook an average of eight meals a week.


Drivers of this trend include an urge to take a more hands-on role in personal health and men not necessarily being the sole breadwinner. But also Millennial men are finding more enjoyment in cooking; they are more likely to claim they “love to cook and consider myself and expert” and “enjoy cooking and being creative in the kitchen” compared to other generations. Non-Millennial men are more likely to claim “I don’t mind cooking, it’s just one of those things I do.”