Sensory Logic Update
Scientific Consumer Insights
by Dan Hill

Explore the Realities of Marketing to Men (May, 2004)

What Drives Men's Needs?

  1. Men seek ways to define their territory;
  2. Men seek ways to establish dominance over what's in their territory;
  3. Men are engaged in acquisition to prove their worth.
Marketing to Men:

An Evolutionary Psychology Perspective
#1 Men seek ways to define their territory;
(photo) Fast car aggressively claiming space.

#2 Men seek ways to establish dominance over what's in their territory;
(photo) The dark, assertive, privileged hero.

#3 Men are engaged in acquisition to prove their worth;
(photo) Welcome to the high-rise Cave;

Men sometimes go Out on a limb;
(photo) Trying to avoid the Tarzan stereotype, but looks lost.

Is this the alternative? - The Metrosexual

Sophisticated, sensitive, emotionally literate . . . but still a guy. This alternative works because:

  • These behavior codes are biologically driven;
  • Political correctness is only skin deep;
  • These rules capture the male segment

Marketers will ignore these basic truths at their own peril.

Gender Differences

Men are Sensation seekers, sell them hope.
Pleasant situations drives high impact/appeal.

Avoid danger, but one can sell via fear.
Unpleasant situation drives high impact/appeal


TV Spot #1 Investment TV
Spot #2 Wonder Bra "Enhance your investment . . " "Enhance your curves . . ."

exploring Gender Split - unaired TV spots:
Women try to appear more accepting than they actually are no emotional buy-in. Men give lip service to financial acumen but sexuality is a far greater motivator.

exploring Pick-up Lines - a test:
"Is there an airport nearby or is it just my heart taking off?"

"Hi, my name's _______. You might want to remember it now, because you will be screaming it later."

Gender Split: Pick-up Lines
Men are more comfortable with pick-up lines, but favor the more explicit. Women are more adverse. Explicit goes strong-negative on emotional radar screen.

The Limits to Metrosexuality
OXO GoodGrips Generic (Fred Flintstone model)
Gender Split: Product
Women favor the upscale OXO spatula.
Men balk at making the emotional connection with the "fru-fru" designer item.

Dan Hill, Ph.D., is president of Sensory Logic, Inc. Minneapolis, MN, a scientific consumer insights firm that specializes in gauging both verbal and non-verbal subconscious reactions to advertising, retail environments, product design, packaging and presentations (i.e. political candidates). Clients include: Target, Goodyear, Nexte, Nationwide Insurance, Toyota, Eli Lilly, Sherwin-Williams and Capital One. Visit for additional information.

Visibility Public Relations

Many more articles in Marketing Insight in The CEO Refresher Archives


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