Advertising Goes Male!

This week the retail giant Old Navy launches its first campaign specifically targeting men. While previous ads have featured men’s clothing through a broad family advertising appeal, they are trying a new tactic speaking directly to the 25- to 35-year-old male target.

Adage reports that the new campaign “pokes fun at men’s fashion with “Supar Tool,” an overly metrosexual man and “Corporado,” a corporate cowboy type.” The campaign introduces the characters through videos to be distributed on YouTube and Facebook, while print ads will run in publications including Maxim. Mobile elements will include a game, style-finder, video gallery, store locator and coupons.

You may also recall recently a predominantly female driven advertising push for weight-loss turned to males during NBA and NHL playoffs with Weight Watchers unveiling its male targeted campaign featuring the “Beer Cheat Sheet”. It’s commercials about weight loss come about as the company claims to have seen a dramatic spike in male interest.

And about a year ago we posted this blog on the Dockers ad targeting “real men” who “wear the pants.”

So why the big push for male targeted advertising? According to Adage “The timing for a men’s apparel push is right.” According to NPD, the men’s apparel market was up 3.3% in 2010, ahead of the overall apparel category, which was up 1.9%. And for the three months ending in February, the men’s apparel category was up 12% compared to the same period a year ago.