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Monday, March 10, 2008

From the Mouths of Husbands: Male Marketing 101

By Mr Colombina

In reviewing previous guest posts, it occurs to me that I am quick to slag off the perfume industry for its absurd marketing and advertising endeavours, yet I have been slow to offer any alternative suggestions. Shame on me.

Part of the problem is of course that the perfume ‘industry’ (and in particular, the men’s fragrance ‘industry’) is an industry … full of out-sourced factories and underpaid labourers…toiling away (lets give the benefit of the doubt as to the live-ability of the going wage). Yet the ‘industry’ … like any creative industry, is more engrossed in its artistic erudite self-image than in the acknowledgement that there are things like competition, economics, and a broader market to reach than just those who buy into the whole frou-frou world … people like me … in short …. Joe-Average males.

Half the world’s population (men) are somewhat excluded from their demographic. And even though the French will never be confused with the Germans for example, when it comes to doing BUSINESS … they (the French) can’t be THAT helpless. After all, they did manage some pretty slick business deals with Iraq despite UN sanctions before the US marched in and ruined it all. But this is not a political blog so I will end the point there.

Now seeing myself as a doer and not just a talker … OK, so nobody else sees me that way but … If I were king of the (men’s fragrance) world, here is how I would go about restoring some sanity to the industry and help it reach a wider market.

Firstly …there is packaging. You want men to buy the stuff, you gotta offer larger quantities. We don’t like buying stuff by the ounce … at least not those of us who don’t buy drugs. We like buying stuff by the gallon … gas, milk etc. You need to have econo-size bottles at Sam’s club.

Alternatively, perhaps offer perfume in a six-pack kind of packaging. … with names like Chanel Light, or Guerlain Extra Dry.

"Chanel …smells great …less filling!”

And have prizes in the packages … men have liked prizes in the packages since the days we used to rot our teeth on kids cereal. In fact sometimes I think the one of the best things about having a child is that I can always have a box of Cap N’ Crunch in the house (for me) without raising suspicions.

Maybe have “buy-one, get-one” sales … grand prize drawings … and other cross-promotional things.

You want men to buy cologne? Shape a bottle like the Lombardi Trophy or the Stanley Cup and now you’re on to something! And while you’re at it … sponsor a car in NASCAR!


I can’t speak for the rest of the world …but if you package and market ANY old caca in the USA, you can sell it. This is the land of the Chia Pet, the Swiffer, the Ginsu Knife, the mood ring, the pet rock, the HOME SHOPPING NETWORK. This is the gadget driven Mecca of Ron Popeil and the Pocket Fisherman!

If you ask me, ALL Americans are addicted to LSD. No not, lysergic acid diethylamide. Nor do I mean Low Sodium Diets. I mean Labor Saving Devices. You want to appeal to a mass market in the US? You need self-spraying bottles … automatic time-release atomizers, and somehow you’ve got to use something “space aged” like Titanium … men love titanium …anything made with It … from golf clubs to auto parts.

Don’t show us European looking dudes in their European suits walking across tables through clouds towards some Nastassja-Kinski-looking femme fatale. Show us break-proof bottle. Show us the results of ‘Pepsi-Challenge’ like comparisons where perfume A was preferred 9 out of 10 times. Tell us it is recommended by dentists whose patients use cologne. Tell us operators are standing by. Give us rebates and frequent buyer cards!

Show us dorky accountant dudes using the stuff and then getting propositioned by super models. You could use someone like David Copperfield in the ads for example, or maybe Seal. We buy into that thinking… “Use this …get beautiful women” … and yes … we ARE that dumb!

You want to reach a broader market of American men? This is how you do it!

Oh wait … what’s that you say … You DON’T want to reach a broader market? Hmmm … hadn’t considered that. Huh … go figure.


Blogger elle said...

Brilliant! Definitely needed this to make me laugh on a very tired Monday morning (DST...grrrrr). I think what my DH would need is a prize in the bottle or w/ the box. But images of Nasstassja K or Heidi K wouldn't hurt...actually, if a picture of one of them was on the label, that might really lure him in as well.

8:44 AM EDT  
Blogger marchlion said...

Ha! You have clearly been studying the purchasing habits of my husband! Who only wears cologne (sometimes) because I buy it and hand it to him.

9:55 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You know, you may have meant this tongue-in-cheek, but I think most of these ideas would work.

I can't remember my google password. :o( I'm Debbie R.

10:20 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great post...Somethings said in jest were just meant to be said and you hit the nail on the head with this one hilarious...It is a sad truth that we men of America are really that superficial and transparent at times...they could always add anything with animals talking about it and the cologne would fly off the shelves by the case loads lol....Wonderful post
you made my morning sir


11:32 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hehehe...instead of "0perators are standing by", does "perfumer stands by!" works too? Love your post!

3:07 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

LOL - I can think of quite a few perfumes that SHOULD come in a gallon size or larger - too bad they don't. Of course I would want the same prices as the smaller sizes. :-D

4:27 PM EDT  
Blogger Shi said...

hilarious post. unfortunately true. i wish my guy friends could read this. what do you think of those axe and tag deodorant commercials?

9:26 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You don't think the same tactics would work on men from around the world !!

You really think only American men are driven by testosterone !!

7:39 PM EDT  

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