Infographic: What Advertisers Should Know About Marketing to Fathers


Men shift brand loyalty after becoming a dad

Fathers are a unique and often overlooked demographic when marketing decisions are made. A recent study conducted by MDG Advertising revealed fatherhood has a huge impact on brand engagement, yet many advertisers remain in the dark about this untapped market. We know dads are tired of being pigeonholed as bumbling or overly macho, but how can advertisers reframe not only how they portray dads, but also how marketers communicate with them?

“It’s clear that when a man becomes a father, he experiences a shift in what’s important to him, which shifts the context of his decision making,” said Anthony Del Gigante, director of brand at MDG. New dads, for instance, tend to make brand changes they perceive as “more responsible,” like switching to healthier foods or more environmentally friendly cleaning products. In the study, 41 percent of dads said they switched brands upon becoming a parent.

“This opens a huge opportunity for brands to understand and speak to this shift,” Del Gigante said.

There’s a longstanding notion that women are the “gatekeepers” of decisions around the house, said Ruth Bernstein, co-founder and CEO of Yard NYC, adding that’s an outdated perception that needs to be updated. Women are not necessarily the primary or final decision makers — 72 percent of respondents said fathers have shopping responsibilities for the home.

There are a plethora of content marketing opportunities for new dads in particular, according to Dave Surgan, group strategy director of content and partnerships at R/GA. With a newborn, every week is a new phase and brings with it new things to think about, from formula selection to baby-proofing, and there’s a “whole world of educational material” out there available to dads, he said.

The study by MDG revealed 80 percent of dads use YouTube to research parenting topics, from assembling products, to which foods are healthiest and how kids learn.

“The fact that [so many] dads turn to YouTube to research parenting topics is exciting,” said Del Gigante. “It shows that there’s a real opportunity to reach dads with smart, useful video content that’s targeted to what they’re searching.”

However, the root of the mindset shift that takes place when a man becomes a father goes deeper than that transition, and marketers must take into account the intersectional complexities of a father’s identity.

According to Joanne McKinney, CEO of Burns Group, who has conducted studies around behavioral science and gender, men and women simply think differently and therefore need to be marketed to differently, though the arena of parenting may be one area where they actually share more similarities than differences. McKinney emphasized the importance of striking a balance between targeting the father as “parent,” but also as a man.

For instance, when women’s roles expand, they tend to be “additive,” explained McKinney. They try to be everything to everyone, while men tend to compartmentalize and switch off between roles. This distinction is an important consideration for marketers in targeting new dads.

Additionally, while parents share many emotions around parenting, a facet that is enhanced by the shared responsibility for their unique child, the research shows women are better at receiving emotional cues, while men need more prompting. “In an ad, you need to tell men ‘Okay, this is when you cry,’” said McKinney.

To some extent, marketing to fathers comes down to understanding the differences between men and women, McKinney said.

“Becoming a father is one of the greatest transitions in life,” said Surgan. “It completely resets the different brands that they might purchase on a day-to-day business — it’s an amazing opportunity.”

Men shift brand loyalty after becoming a dad

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Learn The New Rules of Digital Marketing

Learn to create, analyse and optimise a digital content strategy today, with BoF’s Digital Marketing course. Click here, to view the full online course and watch the trailer.

NEW YORK, United States — Digital communication channels have changed marketing beyond recognition over the last 10 years. Yet fashion continues to be a laggard in adopting new and innovative ways of reaching its consumer. That’s why BoF has partnered with Paper Communications’ Drew Elliott to create an exclusive online BoF Education course.

In this self-directed course, Elliott and BoF created a playbook for success in digital marketing today, sharing best practices for paid and organic marketing strategies — as well as how to work with influencers and create or commission content that will engage and excite audiences.

“This course is for everyone who wants to get ahead in communications and marketing… whether you need a brush up, or you are just starting your career in digital. Nothing is more important to my business, and anyone’s business for that matter, than having new talent who are digital thinkers and there is no better thing to inform you about the internet than the internet itself. Today, you have to know what’s happening in the ecosystem of the internet,” explains Elliott.

Elliott’s career at Paper Communications has seen him transition from intern to co-owner and creative director of the renowned New York publishing and marketing company. Perhaps best known for his ability to #BreakTheInternet, initially with a cover concept featuring a naked Kim Kardashian shot by Jean-Paul Goude, which drove over 14 million users to PAPER’s online channels in 2 days, Elliott is increasingly the man the fashion industry looks to for inspiration and innovation in digital marketing.

Having honed his craft through career stints at Ketchum Agency and theAudience, Elliott brings a unique blend of experiential, editorial and digital experience to his work. Drawing on his broad range of experience, Elliott shares his formula of “math plus magic”: combining creativity and analytics to create audience engagement and potential virality, as well as deep dives into social media, video strategies, working with influencers and live-streaming. Finally, Elliot will also share exclusive insights from his #BreakTheInternet campaign with Kim Kardashian in a case study explaining his four-step model to manage content production, “SPAM”: Strategy, Production, Amplification and Measurement.

Learn the market-leading formulas that could transform your business’ marketing strategy through access to over 10 hours of exclusive video content and interactive learning materials which can be completed at any time.

Learn to create, analyse and optimise a digital content strategy today, including social media, video, influencers and live streaming strategies. Click here, to view the full online course.

What you will learn when taking the course?

In this course, you’re going to learn so many different things about the tools, the platforms, the teams and the talent that make up a successful digital marketing strategy. I want to focus on the three main topics that we’re covering. The first is that digital is everything. It’s replacing traditional ways and modes that we use to talk to people and is becoming the main conversation and main vehicle for consuming content, for promotion and getting your brand out there.

The second is that I’m going to let you in on a little bit of the secret sauce behind #BreakTheInternet. That’s starts with the recipe that I call math plus magic. The math side is the analytics, the audience segmentation and all the science that really helps on the distribution side of things. Whereas the magic is the content, the creation of amazing images, videos, and the things that are going to excite the audience.

The third piece is that as an industry and as audiences, we are moving into the age of entertainment. Instead of becoming publishing companies, instead of becoming content creators, I am going to explain why I believe brands need to become more like entertainment companies to succeed today.

What defines your approach to marketing today?

I see content like tofu. It can be anything you want it to be. It just depends on what spices that you put into it and how you serve it. It can replace advertising. It can turn editorial into something that’s exciting, popularise a fashion show… anything.

My approach began when I wanted to start putting all the things that I knew together. The publishing: the full fantasy, the editorial, the brilliant pictures. I wanted to add in all of the nightclub work. How can I popularise and turn things into events? I wanted to include the agency work, and really understand how can I work with big brands to bring the company scale and bring in the sponsorship dollars that I need. And then on the social media and digital side, how can I take all of those amazing pieces and turn them into popular content that could reach large audiences for zero dollars. Being a content creator is like being a venture capitalist. You put out 10 pieces for one to be a success, but that one success — it can be a huge.

Based on Business of Fashion.com

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The XXX way to easily grow your digital marketing career

Here’s another digital marketing case study, from the “you can’t make this shit up” files.

As you know the marketing industry has become infested with virtue signallers and fake marketers who make outrageous claims and sweeping generalisations about the industry, to try and position themselves as legitimately having some sort of expertise.

Sites like LinkedIn are adorned with self-serving wallpaper promoting miracle ways to be a LinkedIn legend, glib motivational statements for instant success, secret sauce sellers, and “fluencers” of all shapes and sizes.

Given the apparent gullibility of the market to believe this stuff, a mate of mine has decided to run some tests, particularly to see what the automation tools detect within his LinkedIn profile.

He works in sales, most recently selling advertising in digital publications. Given the luvfest for everything “X” (eg CX and UX) currently infecting the industry, he decided to change his job title.

As an aside, why do marketers suddenly have an obsession with customer experience? Hasn’t the customer experience been the key to staying in business since the year dot? If you don’t acquire new customers and keep them regularly spending with you for as long as possible, you don’t have a business. Seems UX and CX are just virtue signals. But I digress.

To capitalise on this latest X-trend, this salesman removed sales manager from his title. He replaced it with an “X”. He called himself a HX Manager to see what it might do to the bots that trawl candidates on LinkedIn.

It only took a day for a result.

He got a call from a digital marketing recruiter. In a very enthusiastic voice she said she was keen to discuss his HX experience, claiming that HX is a growing area of marketing. She asked him to explain his HX expertise for her. (You can’t make this shit up…)

So he did. He said it meant he was a “human experience” manager. In other words, he worked with people selling stuff to them. Bloody amazing stuff this HX. She was well impressed, and asked him to apply for a job she is filling for a global brand, in its UX/CX division.

But he’s decided to expand his HX title to something that is even more descriptive. He is now an IRLX Optimisation Director.

That’s right folks, he’s now an In Real Life Experiences Optimisation Director. In layman’s terms, he sells things to people. And he’s already had one job inquiry, thanks to the brilliant marketing automation tools being used by recruiters to find talent.

Like many, I find the digital marketing industry’s obsession with renaming everything that exists in marketing, for no other reason than there is a digital component, rather tedious. The industry’s labeling by obfuscation is more embarrassing than productive.

I find it easier to understand when people just get straight to the point, like Bob Hoffman does when sharing the truth about the digital marketing industry: “you can’t make this shit up…” is one of his most used phrases.

And you don’t have to make it up. The rubbish that permeates the marketing industry claiming to be truth, is pure XXX-rated rubbish, and it gives you loads to work with to help advance your career.

For example, you can call yourself an XMN – that’s an Expert Marketing Ninja.

Or maybe an XCXMX – experienced customer experience marketing expert.

Maybe we establish another way of using X, with a Roman Numeral bent? Just as the Xs on clothing labels expand with your years (X to XXL) so too they can expand with your career:

  • XMX = 10 years’ marketing expertise
  • XXMX = 20 years’ marketing expertise
  • XXXMX = 30 years’ marketing expertise

These X-options are unlimited, and guess what? You can make this shit up – because there’s a digital marketing sucker born every minute who’ll buy it from you.

Based on Mumbrella

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