Marketing to men has undoubtedly changed in 2015 due to many factors. Relationship stereotypes are changing with technologies blending gender roles. We have also fought for equality in all forms, further reducing the number of differentiating characteristics between the sexes. Lastly, the internet has changed people’s daily lives, causing them to devote more time to things like checking emails and watching YouTube videos. All of these things contribute to why marketers need to shift gears and craft updated messages that speak to “the new man.” Products that don’t adjust their strategy to the new man will be seen as antiquated or even sexist, while those who can juxtapose old-fashioned macho messaging with the new-age femininity of the modern man will strike gold (think of the Old Spice campaigns).
Men admittedly take on more household chores than in previous times, a task traditionally associated with women. According to one study, more men are admitting to doing things like laundry and cleaning the house. Additionally, men are living with their parents longer than they ever have, with 40% between the ages of 18-31 admitting they still inhabit the nest. It is debatable as to whether or not these facts describe a “softer” breed of man, though I think most of us can come to the same conclusion.
According to that same study, more men are exposed to online ads than women, and the site they visit most every month is YouTube.com. This opens up a new opportunity for budgeted marketing. Without having to spend the high dollar amounts of TV advertising, marketers can reach a wide audience through viable options like YouTube advertising, Google Adwords, or Bing Ads. Another plus is that ad campaigns through these mediums are highly customizable and are controlled by the marketers themselves. By contrast, advertising on TV or via an outdoor medium (think Billboards) involves relinquishing control to the company that owns the medium.
More affluent men (those who make more than a $75,000 salary) have more purchasing power, but are also typically in an older demographic (35+). On the other hand, it is men of younger demographics that are most active on the internet and more open to the different forms of online advertising. So how does a marketer address this conundrum? Luckily men between the ages of 25-34 either just received or are about to gain some purchasing power, and are also the second most impressionable group when it comes to seeing online ads. This means that marketers need to tailor their advertising to men 25 and older if they expect any kind of purchase to follow an online campaign (depending on what it is that you are selling, of course) versus simply getting brand exposure.
If a company targets too high of a demographic, their online advertising campaigns may simply fall on deaf ears. The older you get in demographics, the less impressionable men become relative to online ads. The caveat here is that older men check their emails and the news more than younger men, and so email marketing campaigns or sponsored news stories could be more effective at catching their attention. Luxury brands would be most likely to adopt this strategy as a supplement to a TV and outdoor advertising campaign.
So, in summary, businesses should look for marketers who can successfully capture the attentions of online users between the ages of 25 and 54 with some kind of purchasing power. It is also important to make sure the marketer knows how to geotarget an audience in campaigns based on where a company plans on getting or conducting its business. Knowing this information is only valuable if you know how to craft the perfect message for your audience and are offering a product or service worth buying.