Read the article below, and answer the following questions in detail: Response MUST include concepts, appropriate reasons, evidence, and/or examples as support for your position. Use the four...

Read the article below, and answer the following questions in detail:

Response MUST include concepts, appropriate reasons, evidence, and/or examples as support for your position.

  1. Use the four market segmentations, demographic, geographic, psychographic, and behavioral to describe the target market for men's grooming products.  Be sure to state which methods have been used.
  2. In what ways are the marketing mixes (i.e., product, (what the consumer wants and needs), price, (cost to satisfy), place, (convenience to buy), andpromotion, (communication) for men's grooming products different from those for women?  Why?
  3. Describe at least two sociocultural, personal, and psychological influences on consumer behavior that are discussed in the article.
  4. Besides the recommendations and ideas described in the article, provide at least two unique ideas for marketers of grooming products to successfully pursue the male market.

 Dude, Pass the Exfoliator

Marketers Find What Makes Men Buy Eye Cream; Start By Labeling It 'For Men'

By ELIZABETH HOLMES

Matt Anderson was hanging out at a L'Occitane store in Washington, D.C., one afternoon, waiting for a friend's wife to finish shopping, when a saleswoman gently suggested his face and shaved head would benefit from some moisturizer.

Mr. Anderson, a 37-year-old with a beard who manages a team of international disaster-response volunteers for the American Red Cross, had never used a facial skin-care product before, much less one from Provence. But "on a lark," he says, he bought the Verdon Energy Face Moisturizer and soon found he liked it enough to use it twice a day.

Retailers and brands capitalize on men's growing interest in grooming products. Elizabeth Holmes on Lunch Break looks at how a new generation of men are defying the Neanderthal stereotype and paying attention to skin and hair. Photo: Duane Reade.

Perhaps there was a time when moisturizing wasn't "macho," Mr. Anderson says. "If anything went beyond Old Spice, or if it got too poofy, you would kind of be laughed at. Now, there are so many products."

Men's grooming has gone mainstream. Male skin care is one of the beauty industry's fastest-growing sectors, with more men adopting a grooming regimen, alongside exercise and eating right, as a component of healthy living.

Many more men are shopping for themselves, compared with a decade ago when women made most of their purchases. Studies show men now buy as much as half of male-grooming and other types of consumer products.

"We have really noticed a transformational difference in the role that men play," says Rob Candelino, vice president of skin cleansing U.S. at Unilever, whose brands include Dove, Vaseline and Axe.

Setting Men at Ease

Retailers are creating shopping spaces meant to put men at ease. Nordstrom recently moved the men's grooming counter inside the men's furnishings area. Drugstore chains such as CVSCVSG.LN=3.03% and Duane Reade have tested male-dedicated sections.

Macy's M =1.16% in downtown Philadelphia has recently opened a "men's grooming zone" on the beauty selling floor, with a flat-screen TV, free wireless Internet and a Keurig coffee maker.

It is "almost a men's skin-care man cave," says Muriel Gonzalez, executive vice president for cosmetics, fragrances and shoes. A similar space is planned for a Macy's in San Francisco in June.

 Elmer Clarke, counter manager in the 'men's grooming zone' at Macy's in Philadelphia. Retailers use open displays to encourage male shoppers to pick up and handle skin-care products and even test them out.Ryan Collerd for The Wall Street Journal

Male shoppers like to see the words "for men" on labels, says Anthony Sosnick, founder of Anthony Brands Inc. But male-female product differences go deeper than packaging. Male skin-care formulas tend to be lighter and absorb faster than women's, because men's skin is oilier.

And price points tend to be lower. The Anthony Logistics for Men line has a vitamin C facial serum in stores like Sephora, where one ounce costs $42. "If we were to price it like a women's serum, which would be maybe $80 to $100, most of our customers probably would not buy it," Mr. Sosnick says. Price may be one reason the product has female fans.

Whether it's baby boomers hoping to overcome signs of aging or millenials who grew up spritzing Axe body spray, there's a wider spectrum of men buying grooming products than there once was.

 Photos: Looking Good, Guy

 Drugstore chain Duane Reade is experimenting with dedicated display space for men's grooming products, away from the traditional beauty aisles. Duane Reade

"It isn't taboo anymore for men to want to take care of themselves," says Cheri Keating, a groomer and member of the advisory board for Estée Lauder's Lab Series Skincare for Men. The brand recently introduced a brightening eye balm with a 'metallic cooling applicator' ($28) and a tinted moisturizer ($38.50).

Grooming and skin care is long established among gay consumers. For example, Thomas Ellington, a 31-year-old who lives in Boston and works in socially responsible investing, says he began using an anti-aging cream in his early 20s. Friends told him, "Just start using it now. You're going to regret it if you don't."

Now more heterosexual men are catching on. "Straight friends of mine, I run into them in Sephora and Kiehl's," says Sean Kaplan, a 32-year-old Philadelphia real-estate broker.

 Tinted moisturizer ($38.50, Lab Series) is on the next frontier—products with color. Lab Series

About one in four men uses some sort of facial skin-care product, whether it is facial wash, moisturizer, lip balm or eye cream, according to market research firm NPD Group. U.S. department-store sales in the male skin-care sector, which includes body lotion and hair products, reached $84.7 million last year, up about 13% from the prior year, NPD says. Compared with sales of women's skin care, which are north of $2 billion, there's still room to grow, says Karen Grant, senior global industry analyst at NPD.

The shave—a universal and uniquely male need—is the focal point of most grooming routines. To lure men to the next level, brands position new products before and after, such as the pre-shave cleanse or scrub, or after-shave lotion. Kiehl's "Ultimate Man" skin-care routine gives clear, simple instructions in its marketing materials: "1. Cleanse," "2. Shave," and "3. Moisturize."

Now, men are experimenting with more-specific products, like anti-aging serum and eye cream. "The conversation with men has changed," says Chris Salgardo, president of Kiehl's, a L'Oréal division. Whereas a male shopper once might have asked about shaving cream, now he is likely to say, "I'm almost 40 and I don't like these lines around my eyes," Mr. Salgardo says, estimating about a third of Kiehl's shoppers are men.

 Lab Series Skincare for Men added a 'metallic cooling applicator'— think touching a cold soda can—to its $28 eye balm. Lab Series

Cleansing and moisturizing are all well and good, but do men who shave every day really need to exfoliate? Men's grooming marketers say emphatically yes. Dragging a razor across un-exfoliated skin will push dead skin into pores, causing red bumps and irritation.

 Jack Black Beard Lube, a $10.50 shave cream and conditioner, uses a font reminiscent of the script on a cigar label. Jack Black

Certain milestones seem to make a man open to changing his grooming routine, says Magnus Jonsson, director of marketing for Beiersdorf Inc., whose brands include Nivea and Eucerin. The first is when he enters the workforce and "steps into a more mature man's life," says Mr. Jonsson. The next is often marriage or cohabitation.

 Kiehl's UV Guard, $34, is part of its masculine-sounding Facial Fuel line. Kiehl's

Later, it's the appearance of gray hairs that tends to make a man reassess his grooming habits. Should he get divorced and re-enter the dating scene, he'll assess again, Mr. Jonsson said.

Most men have a female "influencer," often his girlfriend or wife, who introduces him to more sophisticated grooming products, says Unilever's Mr. Candelino. "Then once he's in, he starts to pay attention to things."

Men usually are looking for products to solve specific problems, such as dry skin or oily skin, says Jenny Belknap, vice president for global skin-care marketing at Clinique, a brand at Estée Lauder. But they are wary of beauty-industry claims. "You're not going to pull the wool over their eyes," she says. "They're going to try it for themselves and make that determination."

For its Anti-Fatigue Cooling Eye Gel, Clinique opted for a tongue-in-cheek message. "Rough night? No one will ever know," the website description reads. "Combats puffiness, dark circles. Absorbs quickly."

When Curran Dandurand and Emily Dalton created the Jack Black skin-care line, the two women opted for cobalt-blue packaging and a script font, meant to resemble cigar and liquor packaging. The name is meant to sound familiar—like a buddy a man would grab a beer with (and no relation to the actor).

The two chose mostly plastic containers, and they decided against an outer cardboard carton for most products, to encourage men to pick products up in their hands. Ms. Dalton says, "We wanted to grant him permission, in a way, like, 'Hey, this is for you.' 

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kipling2448 | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

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The article from which the student’s questions are drawn – “Dude, Pass the Exfoliator: Marketers Find What Makes Men Buy Eye Cream” (Wall Street Journal, April 26, 2012) – discusses the transformation underway in the market for male-oriented grooming products, for example, facial moisturizers tailored to mens’ unique needs (“Male skin-care formulas tend to be lighter and absorb faster than women’s, because men’s skin is oilier”).  Retailers and marketers have identified a growth in the demand for men’s grooming products that extends beyond the gay male community into the mainstream heterosexual male world.  Naturally, these retailers want to exploit this new, and potentially lucrative (although, not as lucrative as for women: (“If we were to price [men’s grooming goods] like a womans . . .most of our customers probably would not buy it,” Mr. Sosnicks says.”)

Considering demographic, geographic, psychographic, and behavioral categories or segmentations, one would have to conclude that the ideal market for men’s grooming goods includes slightly affluent college students looking to impress their female counterparts and, more importantly in terms of financial well-being and a more vested professional and personal interest in appearing successful, up-worldly mobile, well-educated white collar men.  In short, college students and college-educated professionals are the primary market for all of these segmentations.  These categories of male largely overlap across the four categories of market segmentation, given their lifestyles (professional meetings with female executives; hanging out at upscale bars; taking dates to the finer dining establishments and cultural events, and so on) and social and academic backgrounds.  This the primary market for male grooming products.  Marketing male grooming goods, therefore, highlights each aspect of this lifestyle: young, attractive, professionally-appearing studs playing sports (with nary a hair out of place), interacting with beautiful women in bars, walking along the beach, either alone or with an equally attractive female companion, and so on. 

From a geographic perspective, most of the advertising budget for male grooming products would, consequently, be directed towards large urban areas, like New York City, Chicago, San Francisco, and others, where large concentrations of highly-educated white-collar professionals are found.  Some grooming products, mostly those used in routine everyday tasks like shaving, are oriented towards blue-collar men, especially well-built, handsome construction workers, farmers, firefighters, and other “manly” jobs, but these products are much more limited in their application and in the demographic likely to walk into a store and seek such products out.

I continue to contend that the distinctions between psychographic and behavioral is minimal.  Psychographics speaks to values, activities, interests, statements, and more, most of which overlaps considerably with behavioral characteristics.  Distinctions among promoters, controllers, supporters, and analyzers are only marginally relative to a discussion of male grooming practices.  Certainly, the self-motivated forward-looking controlling type and the high-energy, goal-oriented promoter share common psychological characteristics that may translate to a targeted consumer base that differs from the more passive, conscientious and deliberative supporters and analyzers, but, for marketing purposes, the distinctions may blur.

Below is a link to a series of images produced by Chanel in support of its male-oriented cologne.  As one examines the collage of posed-photographs, as well as the accompanying photographs used by other manufacturers and distributors of male grooming goods, many men are depicted shaving, as that is the most obvious application for male grooming items, with a smiling or thoughtful, but always confident facial expression.  Notable male celebrities are sprinkled among the collage, including Justin Timberland, Matthew McConaughey, Bradley Cooper, all representing the male ideal of virulence, masculinity, success and confidence. 

Men’s grooming products, at least with the transition to more of a market for male grooming goods, are marketed, including their display in retail stores, differently than for women.  Retailers and marketers know that men will not walk into predominately female cosmetics departments and shop for male grooming items.  That is why, as the enclosed Wall Street Journal article notes, retailers are responding this growing market by setting up special sections devoted to male-oriented good.  As the article points out, “Nordstrom recently moved the men’s grooming counter inside the men’s furnishings area. . .[while] Drugstore chains such as CVS and Duane Reade have tested male-dedicated sections.”  Many men are a little sensitive to entering women’s cosmetics departments, which are totally staffed by women and most of the products in which are marketed to women, in their search for male-oriented products, like skin cream.  It can be just a tad awkward.  Setting up a separate section ornamented with male-oriented decorations and posters with themes like handsome stud playing touch football or preparing to climb into a fighter jet simply appeals to the male of the species more than images of women applying lipstick and eyeliner. 

Price, as the article also pointed out, is another distinction between the genders.  Except for the most affluent, most men will not spend as much on personal grooming as women.  Consequently, retailers know they have to sell male grooming items for much less than a similar item would sale for women.  Men want masculine imagery, and they don’t want to pay a lot for skin cream or cologne, unless they look like the wealthy stud in the picture on the counter who doesn’t work, scores with top babes, and always looks great. 

At the heart of the distinctions between the genders is, of course, the far greater emphasis women have culturally had to place on personal grooming.  Women spend much of their morning undertaking with near-military precision a process involving lip gloss, rouge, eyeliner, and all the stuff that goes into it.  And don’t get me started on eyebrow tweezing.  Men, in contrast, are simpler and have succeeded in keeping the highly-biased cultural imperative for looking proper leaning heavily on the side of women. Other than a close shave, and maybe a little hair gel and/or aftershave lotion, that’s pretty much it.  That’s why, for many decades, advertising oriented towards men focused on razor blades and electric shavers, after-shave lotion, some hair tonics or gels, and definitely cigarettes.  In short, cultural, personal and psychological influences on male consumer behavior are a direct outgrowth of the male of the species’ proclivity for not being terribly concerned with most grooming issues.  Hunters and gatherers needed good work boots, not a lip gloss to go with our bison-skin overall.  Finally, the centuries old cultural biases against women – manifested most prominently in the denial of the right to vote until the early 20th Century – and certain prescribed formulas women were expected to follow, including assuming the role of permissive partner and home-keeper, all placed a certain onus on women to fit the mold established by men.  The men, though, get enjoy the beach, playing sports, partying, picking up women in bars, and a handful of other common themes intended to attract male consumers.  As many have pointed out over the years, June Cleaver performed housework in a nice dress with her hair made-up and dangling earrings and high heels, while Ward walked around in his work pants and a button-down shirt. 

One potential marketing idea with regard to male consumers is to make the advertisements more realistic.  Most of us don’t work as professional actors and models, and don’t look like Brad Pitt or George Clooney.  Marketing to the overwhelming percentage of men who are just ordinary guys working mundane jobs all week and hoping for little more than to watch a couple of football games might benefit from minimizing the utopian imagery currently, and historically, used in favor of appealing to more realistic examples of humanity.  That doesn’t have to mean the morbidly obese guy walking out of Dairy Queen; it could involve, however, the average construction worker, or even waiter, who want to look good when off the job (the waiter, actually, wants to look good on the job as well as off it).  In other words, appeal to real people using real people.  The hair-care line of products Just for Men does this fairly well, as Dial and Dove, the latter having been particularly adept at adapting its business line to the average male consumer.

Marketers have employed almost every tactic imaginable to attract male customers.  Invariably, those tactics appeal to the sense of rugged individualism many of us envision for ourselves, and to the aforementioned upwardly mobile, well-groomed businessman.  Professional athletes are used to promote male grooming goods, like shampoos and aftershaves, and variations of the old “Marlboro Man” image continues to be adapted for advertising campaigns.  What more could be done is hard to say.  The most important contribution or step that can be taken is the one the article indicates some stores are already applying – segregating men’s grooming items well away from those for women, and placing them in a setting that absolutely reeks of testosterone. 

Sources:

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