47% of Super Bowl Viewers Are Women

February 11, 2016 § 2 Comments

dame-helen-mirren-640673Here’s Dawn Boulanger’s take on how the Super Bowl scored with women.

The Super Bowl 50 match-up between the Broncos and Panthers drew an estimated 111.9 million viewers – the second- highest rated Super Bowl in history. According to Nielsen, 47% of viewers in 2015 were women. If we assume the same viewing patterns this year, 53 million of those watching on Sunday were women – that’s more women than will watch the Oscars, Grammys and Emmys combined!

Women drive the consumer market – they influence the majority of purchases across all categories and they do the majority of social media sharing. Despite their influence, advertisers have historically used the big game to market to men. Past years’ commercial critiques have included the lack of targeting of women and the use of sexist stereotypes to sell products.

There seemed to be some creative change in this year’s Super Bowl spots with advertisers getting smarter about who’s watching, who’s sharing and with an actual attempt at connecting with these powerful female consumers.

Here are a few of the spots that have received positive comments for their representation of women, the use of empowerment in their messaging and their understanding of the target audience.

  1. Budweiser Ad, Simply Put – Budweiser uses Helen Mirren to send a strong warning against drinking and driving.
  1. Mini, Defy Labels – Mini Cooper uses powerful celebrities such as Serena Williams to challenge the use of labels and stereotypes.
  1. Hyundai, Ryanville – with the use of Ryan Reynolds clones and women drivers, Hyundai clearly targeted the female audience.
  1. No More, Domestic Violence PSA – a powerful message to help raise awareness about domestic violence.

Super Bowl 51 is a long way away – maybe by then we will have figured out Mountain Dews’ PuppyMonkeyBaby commercial!



Marketing to Women: Top Ten 2013 Lipstick Economy Posts

December 27, 2013 § Leave a comment

A little retrospective on what you thought was most interesting in The Lipstick Economy this year. These are the top posts on marketing to women from this year.  A confusing year for women – Sheryl Sandberg told us to “lean in”,  Miley showed us how to twerk and Yahoo’s Marissa Mayer extended paid leave for parents and banned telecommuting.  

iStock_000012573383XSmallMarketing Travel to Women: Eight New Trends You Need to Know.  According to the Travel Industry Association, there is an estimated 32 million single American women who have traveled at least once in the past year, and some three in ten travel five or more times a year.  The average adventure traveler is not a male but a 47-year-old female and they have different expectations from travel than men.

Marketing to Women: Growth of Women in Marketing.  Almost a third of all Americans are employed in marketing-related positions.  That’s a staggering number if you think about it.  And it is a path for women to grow up the corporate ladder.   A recent study by a recruiting firm found that more top executives have come out of marketing than of any other area.

Marketing to Women: Why Marketers Don’t Understand Women.  For the first time in history, women now outnumber men in the workforce. Women are more educated, accounting for approximately 58% of students in two- and four-year colleges.   We account for 85% of all consumer purchases.   Purchases include homes, healthcare, cars, travel and computers.  And 96% list “being independent” as their single most important life goal.  But research says 91% of women don’t think marketers understand them.

M_BeyonceSuperBowl_101612Marketing to Women: Women Watching Super Bowl Too!  More women are watching the Super Bowl than the Academy Awards! In 2012, 54 percent of the roughly 111 million viewers who tuned in to watch the Superbowl on Fox were men, compared to 46 percent women.

Marketing to Women: Your Elevator Speech in 15 Seconds.  Sometimes the most important things are not addressed in business.  This handy guide to creating your elevator speech in 15 seconds is vital.  At New Year’s when you are at that party and someone asked you what you do, what will you say?

Marketing to Women: Six Things to Know About #Hashtags.  Hashtags are everywhere.  Some 24% of tweets contain hashtags. And 71% of people on social media use hashtags.  Even Facebook instituted the lowly pound mark that has become a strong marketing tool.  Do you know when to hashtag and not to hashtag?

Marketing to Women: One-third of All Women Are Single “Indies”.  It’s a new day for women and there is even a new term for the group that are over 27, not married, not living with a partner, and without children.  They are called the Indies.  This group has been growing and currently include some 31 million women, about a third of all adult women.  They now surpass the number of married moms!

Marketing to Women: Emotional Connection Important for Healthcare.  A recent study shows that 85% of consumers say it is important or very important to them to do business with a company for which they have strong emotions, per survey results from rbb Public Relations.  And the industry for which it is most important is healthcare.

Marketing to Women: Power to the PANKs.  PANKs, Professional Aunts No Kids.  They are actively involved in the lives of children around them.  In fact, one in five women is a PANK, or approximately 23 million Americans.  PANKs are roughly half of all the women who are not a mother or grandmother.  This group is actually growing as women are choosing to stay single or marry later.  PANKs spend $9 billion on toys and gifts for children annually.

Marketing to Women: Top 10 Culinary Trends for Restaurants.  The top 2013 trends included healthy kid’s food, iced tea, gluten-free, Greek yogurt and more.

Marketing Football to Women: Touchdown Time!

September 24, 2013 § 2 Comments

thumb.aspxFor marketers, football is almost as important as the holiday season.  The all round appeal to both men and women has made football one of the most efficient delivery vehicles for marketing messages.  Instead of Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas, the Football Holidays are the start of the season, the big game match-ups like the Manning Brothers Bowl, Alabama v. Anybody, the BCS and of course, the Super Bowl.

Part of the allure is the real time benefit of live sports.  According to Tor Myren, president and chief creative officer at the Grey New York division, “It’s one of the few things America watches in real time, together and, as a result, the airtime is very valuable.”

Super Bowl cocktail party fact:  Fox has already sold  85 to 90 percent of the commercial inventory for the 2014 Super Bowl, at a price of $4 million for every 30-second spot.  Because of the major investment in television, the brands are extending their reach with social media, ala the famous Oreo blackout tweet.

More women (50.4 million) tuned into last year’s Super Bowl than watched the Oscars (24.5 million), Grammys (23.8 million) and Emmys (8 million), according to Nielsen. The Super Bowl’s female audience has more than doubled from only five years ago, and the last three Super Bowl broadcasts have set records for being the most-watched shows by female viewers.

Female football fan fact:  If you are marketing to women, listen up.  The NFL counts 185 million Americans as fans (60% of the US population) and 45% of those are women.  About half of all fans are either avid or casual.  Among avid fans, women compose one-third of fans, and are a slight majority of casual fans.  (And this doesn’t include college football!)

For women, Marie Claire had an extra 16 page NFL insert in their September issue titled “The Savvy Girl’s Guide to Football.”  There were five full-page ads for women’s apparel from the NFL’s Women’s collection, fashion tips, recipes and some football terminology.  The insert was just one part of the NFL campaign that included print advertising, television and pop-up clothing boutiques at stadiums.  The new apparel is not based on the traditional “pink it and shrink it”  approach, but rather on jerseys cut for women and accessories made for women.  Is it working?  The sales of women’s apparel has tripled in the past four years.

Click here for this year’s NFL fashion show.

Tailgating is also a female sport with approximately $20 billion estimated to be spent at sports and non-sports events this season.

There is also another new term – “homegating” – which refers to all the entertaining merchandise needed for the Saturdays and Sundays at home watching games with friends and family.  And of course, that customer is also female.

So if you think football, remember it’s not just a men’s event anymore.

Marketing to Americans: Are Brands Patriotic?

July 6, 2013 § Leave a comment

Can a brand be patriotic?  Of course it can.  And evidently Jeep meets consumer expectations for patriotism.  It’s the brand associated with winning World War II. And in today’s world, it has come to symbolize American ruggedness and a sense of adventure.

The Jeep brand is named in a survey as the most patriotic brand from 197 famous brand names in 35 categories.  The brand lives its heritage and its brand associations with those things that make us American.  Take a look at this Super Bowl spot for Jeep and the USO that has been viewed more than 7.6 million times.  The emotional resonance of a brand is what takes it from everyday to icon.

BrandKeys-Americas-Most-Patriotic-Brands-July2013-300x195A new survey from Brand Keys asked 4,500 consumers  to evaluate 197 brands across 35 category-specific emotional engagement values, with one of those values being how much patriotism they emotionally credited to the brand.  Brand Keys recognizes that being patriotic is more than waving a flag, but actually having an authentic foundation for being able to wave the flag.  Many of these brands would fall into the “American Icon” designation.

Marketing to Women: Women Watching Super Bowl Too!

February 3, 2013 § Leave a comment

For those in advertising that are spending their Super Bowl money to reach only men, they are missing the wings and nachos boat.  The number of men versus women watching is getting more narrow.  Who is sitting next to the NFL commissioner at the game this year?  Why a little girl from Utah named Sam Gordon — a girl playing in an all-boys tackle football league.

M_BeyonceSuperBowl_101612Last year, 54 percent of the roughly 111 million viewers who tuned in to watch the Packers and Steelers on Fox were men, compared to 46 percent women.  And those women were not just delivering the pizza and chips to the guys in the family room.  They are real fans.

A recent survey by Advertising Age showed that 55 percent of American women watched at least one regular season NFL game last season, and women account for 20 percent of all fantasy football participants. In the last 10 years, the gender gap in the Super Bowl audience has narrowed from 14 percentage points in 2002 to 8 points in 2012. More women are watching the Super Bowl than the Academy Awards!

Since 2004, the NFL has been promoting more family-oriented half-time entertainment and fan attractions.  It’s no surprise that Beyonce is the half-time performer this year.  She appeals to both strong men and women, and she rocks that modern sensibility for young women. It is also not surprising that the first spot coming out of the half-time show was an All American Jeep and USO salute to our military, to our families and to our faith – voiced by Oprah.  As the mother of a deployed Marine, it definitely was my favorite.  My husband said, “Let’s go buy a Jeep.”

So what gives with many of the Super Bowl ads?  Many are sex-driven, testosterone celebrations.  Advertisers are being challenged to find a way to embrace female sexuality without degrading women.   “Especially given the female viewership, advertisers have to be broadly acceptable without being polarizing,” said Tim Calkins, marketing professor at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.

The tasteless award this year may be model Kate Upton in a spot for Mercedes.  In the ad, the model is hand-washing a new Mercedes Benz C-Class in revealing attire for the entire 90 seconds of air-time.

But here’s the interesting dilemma:  More than half of all women polled in a PHD survey reported that Super Bowl advertisements using sex appeal equally targeted both genders. Seventy-four percent of women aged 18 to 34 said they liked the sexy images in the previous year’s Super Bowl advertisements, compared with 84 percent of men in the same age range.  So how do advertisers create the right mix of  female sexuality without the woman being portrayed in a demeaning fashion.

One of the ongoing issues for the advertising community is the lack of female creative directors.  Some estimate that only 3-4 percent of creative directors are female.  Why is that a problem?  Because creative departments start to take on the personality of a frat house.  Women are not fairly represented unless there are strong women in the account management and/or client side.

Marketing to Women: Women Love Football Too!

October 22, 2012 § Leave a comment

There is a prevalent myth among marketers that women don’t watch sports.  The NFL is debunking that myth.   Here’s some info from Advertising Age that shows that football scores with women.  The Super Bowl’s female audience has more than doubled in only five years.  The last three Super Bowl telecasts have set records for being the most-watched shows by female viewers.

And NBC’s “Sunday Night Football”  has  become the first sports show to finish in the top spot in prime time.  Why?  Well the weekly match-ups ranked fourth among women 18 to 49 years old, behind only “American Idol” (Wednesday), “The Voice” and “American Idol” (Thursday).

Another clue to the popularity should be the number of pink shoes and gloves you have seen on NFL players during Breast Cancer Awareness month.  The National Football League and NFL Players Association support October’s National Breast Cancer Awareness Month with their fourth-annual national breast cancer screening initiative and fundraising campaign. The campaign seems to be working – 64% of NFL female fans and 61% of all NFL fans identify the importance of annual screenings, especially for women over 40.

And football fashion is not far behind.  Remember those spots about NFL apparel for women?  Well, it turns out that it’s the NFL’s fastest growing consumer-products business, showing double-digit growth.  And who’s jersey reigns? Last year it was Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu  among women’s jersey sold. Polamalu was followed by Peyton Manning and Drew Brees, who rank fourth and second on the men’s list, respectively, according to stats from NFLShop.com.

The Dunham household has loved Troy Polamalu since he played for beloved USC Trojans.   Troy’s brother-in-lay and business partner Alex Holmes says that of Polamalu’s more than 2,222,349 likes on Facebook, 49 percent of his fans are female.


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