Women Love a Sensitive Man (via Google Reader)

Don’t worry, you didn’t accidentally stumble upon a new relationship blog, this is still Marketing Pilgrim, but today we’re going to talk about the softer side of men. According to January’s Women and NBCU’s Brand Power Index, women are warming up to marketing campaigns that show men as emotional and sensitive.

Melissa Lavigne-Delville, VP of Trends and Strategic Insights for Women at NBCU says;

“After a year of advertising that touted the ‘alpha male,’ with campaigns like Dockers’ ‘Wear the Pants’ or Dodge’s ‘Man’s Last Stand,’ we are seeing a noticeable shift in the marketplace as brands break down gender stereotypes in their ads and portray a less traditional and more sensitive, family-centric male.”

Chevrolet rose 27 spots on the index for the first time after they ran their new “Guy’s Night Out” commercial where a dad gets embarrassed in front of his friends when his child’s CD plays over the car stereo. They also gave KIA a bump up 137 places for their “Sweet Dreams” ad that likens driving their car to a boy’s childhood fantasy.  Minute Maid’s male, OJ drinking wedding crasher bumped them up 139 notches

But it’s not enough to just show the sensitive side of men, the marketers who added a strong, gender-breaking female to the equation did even better.

Says Lavigne-Delville;

“Brands like Sprint seem to recognize that pairing a stronger woman alongside a softer man balances out the new gender equation. This seems particularly apropos on the heals of recent reports that young women are now out-earning men in the marketplace.”

Febreze used their NFL sponsorship to target the women behind the big football parties and it gained them 62 points on the Brand Index. And then there’s Sprint, who came in at 23rd on the list thanks to an ad where a girl dumps her boyfriend via text message. How’s that for role reversal?

What was the brand women talked about the most? Wal-mart took top honors with Target, Verizon, eBay and Ford close behind.

Forget the softer side of Sears, if you want women to buy your product, give them a sensitive man diapering a baby while Mommy heads off to work.

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