Saturday, May 22, 2010

Old Spice Marketing to Homo Metrosexualis

I've been watching AUX this afternoon, which is heavily sponsored by Old Spice and I may have "Armpit Mountain" {above} memorized. P&G's Old Spice has been trying to hippen their brand and have enlisted Wieden & Kennedy of Portland, OR for the past few years to make it happen. While Axe may seem to have defined how advertising is done in the youth-oriended metrosexual mens' grooming market {$19.7B in the US in 2009 and expected to grow to $33.2B globally by 2015}, Old Spice is mounting a challenge.

Andy Wallman's blog describes & posts video clips of ads for Old Spice's Odor Blocker body wash, directed by Tim & Eric of "Tim & Eric Awesome Show" on Adult Swim. 

Here's a video on the making of those ads::

Selling to the metrosexual lifestyle is interesting, as is the entire concept. Metrosexuality is going increasingly mainstream, appealing to male vanity and perhaps challenging ideas and ideals surrounding masculinity. Naturally, selling products as accoutrements will have to be "on code" and fitting in with a concept of cool. Axe and Old Spice are using humour to sell, which is a safe bet for a younger male audience. The Dos Equis "Most Interesting Man" commercials are a good example of this::

In pop culture, it's funny how perhaps some of the best icons of metrosexuality are from a retrospective stance. I can't help but think of Christian Bale playing Patrick Bateman of American Psycho {2000}, as the 1980s embodiment of the name-brand dropping Wall Streeter with a fitness and skin care regimen {click to open in new window}::

Fast forward a better part of a decade to Jon Hamm's Don Draper in AMC's "Mad Men"::

Here's a response to Mad Men from way back in 2008 on BoingBoing::
"There's plenty to criticize about the show, but for me it's cut-to-fit: gorgeous, full-bodied women in painted-on dresses; whisky by the barrel, cigarettes by the carton, a steak on every plate; men's formal fashion at the turn of its last great change, affording older men to wear worsted three pieces and young bucks to sport skinny ties and sharkskin; a look at the office of the career man; swingin' New York, half beat poets and half modern opulence; all predicated with seething, soaking dissatisfaction for the post-war utopia they're living in. I'm not sure its message is terribly profound, but it is mid-century pornography that appeals to nearly all my sensibilities."
Which reminds me that it's time to hit the LCBO and stock up on my own metrosexual accoutrements.

Song:: Amandititita-'Metrosexual'

[blog] #OldSpice ads by W&K lending a hip & humourous air to metrosexual marketing twds Patrick Bateman & Don Draper set. @Prof_K

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