Canadian University Dubai



CanadianUniversity Dubai


Campbell’sTargets Growing Male Grocery Shoppers

SaraAlami Riad &amp Nader AbouFakher

ConsumerBehavior MKT 208-2

Ms.Suhair Hamouri



Traditionally,there are specific gender roles that define the responsibility of menand women in the family and the society. However, dual incomehouseholds, more educated women, unemployment, generational shifts inattitudes and media influence have had an impact on gender roles inthe modern society. Today, men are assuming householdresponsibilities, which were considered to be women responsibilitiesonly in the past. In fact, there have been an increasing number ofmale grocery shoppers. It is estimated that more that half of men areprimary grocery shoppers. Thus, there is an increased trend oftargeting men grocery shoppers in advertisements. Campbell’s soupis one of the brands that have targeted men in their advertisements.Campbell’s Chunky Soup has used male actors in advertisement inseveral media. It has also partnered with institutions such as NFL insome of its sales promotion activities. Although the shift intargeted clientele has a positive impact on the sales, the marketingteam should take into consideration the special characteristics ofmale grocery shoppers and how they are different from femaleshoppers. There is a misconception that men will always buy productsthat have a masculine view, for example beer. In fact, a goodpercentage of men in grocery shops are fathers and therefore are morelikely to buy the same product women tend to buy. However, theirshopping behaviors are still relatively different.


Traditionally,the shopping for groceries was primarily the responsibility of women.However, the changes in the social structures have resulted into anincreased number of men shopping in grocery stores. Advertisements,targeting this group of shoppers, are mainly concentrated on changingthe cognitive component behind this attitude of this new group ofshoppers. For example, the commercial featuring a father shopping ata Wal-Mart store and buying P&ampG products acts as a stimulus tochange the cognitive, affective and behavioral components of theattitude. The publicity provides towards changing the cognitiveattitude, beliefs and knowledge, about men shopping in grocerystores. It dispels the perception that it is not masculine and not aman’s responsibility. Furthermore, it encourages men to changetheir affective component about this consumer behavior. It wants mento feel confident and comfortable shopping in the grocery stores.Moreover,the marketing strategy Campbell’s Chunky Soup uses is central routeto persuasion. The advertisements have high involvement with thedecisions, strong attention focused on male shoppers, conscious aboutthe social factors and a strong persuasion to alter the perceptionthat grocery shopping is a female responsibility. The attitudesformed under the central route to persuasion tend to be stronger,resistant to counter persuasion attempts, such as social structuresand cultural beliefs, and are more accessible from the memory.However, it is important to note that there is a likelihood of thetargeted group’s resistance to persuasion by the advertisement. Thecommunication strategy employed has an influence on the ability ofthe adverts to change the attitudes of the clients. This includes whodelivers the message and how it is communicated and derived. Forexample, the partnership of Campbell’s Chunky Soup with NFL inpromoting male grocery shoppers is an effective strategy to persuadepeople, especially the use of mothers to football legends, whichgives the adverts the credibility and celebrity influence.Credibility makes persuasion easier when the target market views themessage source as highly credible. Lastly, Celebrity influenceenhances attention, attitude toward the ad, trustworthiness,expertise, aspiration aspects, and meaning transfer.


Althoughthere are an increased number of men shopping in grocery shops, thereare huge variations in the shopping behaviors of men and women. It istherefore essential for a grocery store targeting male clients tounderstand the shopping behaviors of men and how they vary from thatof women. For example, there is no doubt that men are more likely tobuy goods associated with masculinity while women prefer morefeminine goods. However, the situation in a grocery store may bedifferent. According to the table, shopping habits are categorizedinto money saving strategies, shopping behaviors, list makingbehaviors and brand selecting behaviors. In the money savingstrategies, women are more likely to shop in different stores to getthe lowest prices, buy all purpose products to reduce the number ofitems bought and buy less variety to reduce the number of itemsrequired. Therefore, since male shoppers are not less likely to havemoney saving habits, a grocery store targeting men should have awider variety of goods. This is because men tend to buy more goods inone store rather than moving from one store to another looking forcheaper prices or all purpose products. However, men are less likelyto look at the store circular, do unplanned purchases, stock up orchoose product because of loyalty card discounts.

Maleshoppers go to the store with a specific shopping list, which isunlikely to be influenced by what they see in the store. This meansthat men are more likely to make in advance a list of goods they aregoing to buy in a grocery store, while women prefer using a storecircular to make the list. While men list is based on the specificbrands they intend to buy, women lists are based on the ingredientsrequired for a recipe. Men also list specific brands and stores theyare going to buy. This indicates that men make their decisions athome, while women tend to make decisions at the store. Therefore,adverts in the media, which influence male decisions, are expected tobe more effective as compared to promotional materials at the stores,which target mainly impulse buyers. Additionally, male shoppers areless likely to be influenced by previous usage, newspapers circulars,request from household members or the packaging and labeling of theproduct. Therefore, male shopping behaviors indicate that they aremore likely to be attracted by a grocery store that stocks a largervariety of commodities.


Campbell’sand NFL partnership branding strategy mainly focuses on attention.The most important aspect of marketing is to capture the attention ofthe consumer. There are several strategies that marketers use tocapture the attention of the consumers. Among them is matching theitem being marketed to something the consumer has an experience with.In this case, the Campbell’s Chunky Soup wants to capture the malegrocery shoppers by joining with NFL in advertisements andpromotional campaigns. Almost all men in the United States are funsor fanatics of NFL. Therefore, Campbell is trying to attach apositive feeling about their product with the NFL players’endorsement. When viewers see their favorite NFL player associatedwith this brand, this influences their behavior towards trying theirproduct, remembering it, and having feelings towards it. This isbecause majority of men identify themselves with NFL celebrities.Therefore, the branding partnership between Campbell’s Chunky Soupand NFL is beneficial to the marketing strategy as it is most likelygetting a lot of attention from the males.


Brandpositioning is essential in the determination of a brand image in themarket, against other competitors. It is used to determine the bestway to communicate the attributes and qualities of a product to thetargeted consumers. Campbell’s marketing strategy identifies theneeds of the customers and the messages that are likely to resonatewell in advertisement. Its advertisements mainly target maleshoppers. Therefore, the marketing team need a marketing strategythat ensures the brand name of the product is better that thecompetition. The grocery market is dominated by women, and thereforea good number of products have famine feel. Therefore, the marketingstrategy seeks to position Campbell’s Chunky Soup as a masculineproduct which puts it’s at an advantage. The partnership with NFLresonates with the targeted clientele since men shoppers are likelyto identify with NFL players. In the perpetual map, some soups havepositioned themselves in the market as high quality soup with afeminine feel. However, in addition to high quality, Campbell’sChunky Soup has positioned itself as masculine soup. Progresso soupis high quality soup but more feminine. Wild Oats Marketplace andBear Creek Country Kitchen soups are relatively low quality soups,although Bear Creek Country Kitchen is more masculine soup. Swansonbroth is relatively neutral in its brand positioning.



Traditionally,men and women have specific gender roles. These gender roles has animpact on the decision making process in buying commodities.Consequently, the changes in gender roles where individuals areassuming roles that were traditionally a preserve of the oppositegender has resulted into changes in marketing strategies. This isbecause these changes have an impact on the household decision makingprocess. For example, an advertisement can target the user, initiatoror the informational gatherer. Traditionally, the wife could doeverything related to grocery purchases, including gatheringinformation, making the decision and buying. However, in the modernfamily structure where gender roles have evolved, men are involved inall aspects on the purchase.


Traditional gender roles

Evolving gender roles



Wife, husband

Information gatherer


Wife, husband, children



Wife, husband

Decision maker


Wife, husband



Wife, husband


Wife, husband, children

Wife, husband, children


Hawkins,D. (2009). Consumerbehavior, building marketing strategy,New York, McGraw Hill Irwin.