No Marketing to Men blog sequence would be complete without a mention of the expanding global marketplace. Thanks to technology, the world has gotten smaller. It has given unprecedented access to a global market place, giving the smart marketer a chance to sell well beyond their borders. However, ads resonate differently with people from different cultures, so it is important to see the world from their eyes if you want to make a sale.
For example, color means different things in different cultures. Marketers might think it’s a great idea to encourage men to give slinky black lingerie to the woman in their lives, but of course, this is not always appropriate in terms of ethics, and in many countries the color black also has negative associations. In Buddhist countries, for example, it is considered to be an ugly color, not sexy at all. Around the world, people have different holidays and traditions. In Japan, women give men chocolate on Valentine’s Day, and men give it to women in March on White Day.
People also have different values. An interesting study related to Welch’s grape juice took two different tactics. One showed the “fun” factor of drinking Welch’s grape juice, while the other emphasized its healthy aspects. The Anglo-Americans in the study preferred the first, but the Asian Americans who participated in the study reacted more favorably to the “healthy” ads.
Men’s fashions can vary widely in terms of what is considered tasteful and appropriate, though all men seem to love sports clothes and sneakers. In terms of sneakers, though, there might be issues with them if they are derived from animal products because many people in the world are vegetarian or vegan, so the non-harm of animals will extend to their clothing in the same way that most Westerners now avoid any form of fur on their clothing.
Finally, religion obviously also plays a part. You can’t sell animal products to Hindus or Buddhists. You also can’t sell pork products to Jewish or Muslim people. A lot of marketers make the mistake of thinking, “EVERYONE will want my product,” and end up selling to no one. Why? Because they are not targeting their marketing specifically enough to answer the all-important question of, “What’s in it for me?” that every man will ask before buying anything. Whether it will make their life easier, help them feel good about themselves, take care of their basic needs such as food, clothing, and personal hygiene, or making the important people in their lives happy, give a clear answer as to benefits and you have a much greater chance of making a sale.
Marketing to men may not be as lucrative as marketing to women, since women tend to do a great deal of shopping and heavily influence household spending in the US. However, men’s shopping habits can mean significant profits due to them being so goal-oriented when it comes to shopping rather than price-sensitive. The fact that they are in a hurry can also mean more money for the marketer who focuses on men. Finally, marketing globally with sensitivity to cultural differences can gain access to new opportunities in countries where men still make the major financial decisions.
To your best success in marketing to men!