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Here’s a business idea, a grocery store aimed specifically at men. Sound crazy? Maybe not. According to Defy Media’s 2nd annual Acumen Report: Brand New Man 65% of men are the primary shoppers for several household product categories. And here’s a well-kept secret, 67% say they actually enjoy shopping for the family.

I’m one of those rare animals that actually enjoys grocery shopping, so I get it. It can be very relaxing and freeing and if you’re a dad, it feels good to choose the products that are right for your family.

The report clearly shows that the modern man is less interested in being the bread-winner as he is about being the bread buyer or even baker!

The important note for marketers is that men are happy to forgo the wife’s shopping list in favor of new brands if they have a good reason to do so.

Younger males (18-34) are represented by the darker line. The lighter line are males 35-49.

Almost half of young men said there were influenced by recommendations from friends and family first, followed by ads and coupons. Note that 28% became aware of new brands via an online video. That’s a pretty big number for a small marketing segment. Also note that younger buyers are highly likely to by the brand their parents used. So if your brand has a history, don’t be afraid to use that in your marketing.

Older men were slightly more influenced by advertising and coupons. Recommendations from friends is secondary but still important. Video and social media barely register with this group. If this is your audience, spend more of your budget on real mail and less on email.

Buying from the Heart

Old comedies often show clueless male shoppers randomly grabbing whatever their hand lands on when forced to grocery shop. For an extra laugh, the man might ask a kindly older woman to help him choose the best laundry detergent or he might ask a pretty veggie shopper how to determine ripeness (when all he really wants is a date.)

But this new report shows that the modern male shopper is actually quite thoughtful when it comes to product choice.

  • Almost half (49 percent) bought a product because he liked the brand’s story or history and 60 percent noted they bought a product specifically because it was made locally

“I will look at local as well; if there are local brands, I try and support [them]. That’s just for the economy and trying to help out what’s happening nearby.” – Derrick, Orlando, FL – survey participant

  • Health matters: men appear to be seeking healthier options in the grocery aisles – more than half (58 percent) of men look for foods that are natural, low fat, less sugar or organic while 70 percent said they are buying more healthful foods compared to the past

  • Close to 57 percent said they would stop buying from a company that did something offensive or illegal

Read that last one again. More than half would stop buying from a company that offends them. I know you think that can’t happen to you but that’s what the marketing manager for SpaghettiOs thought before he okay’d the tribute to Pearl Harbor Day.

The takeaway here is that a male-oriented marketing message might be all your company needs to move to the next level.


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