Mindshare: Men And Millennials Enter Holiday Shopping Season With A Plan

Research shows that Black Friday and Cyber Monday may be a bigger deal for men versus women, and for millennial shoppers as compared to other age groups, says Mindshare's Joe Migliozzi.

When it comes to sorting through the groups of shoppers as the holiday shopping season gets underway this weekend, brands might want to consider specific approaches to men and Millennials.

When it comes to shopping for Black Friday and Cyber Monday, WPP’s Mindshare NA found that men are more likely than women to “know” what they’ll spend.

The media agency surveyed 779 upcoming shoppers for Black Friday or Cyber Monday to look at what (and why) people want to buy, what they want from retailers, where they seek discounts, and much more. The research was conducted Shop+, the agency’s dedicated retail unit using The Pool (Mindshare’s  research tool. More details in this release).

Holiday Budget Battle Of The Sexes

Mindshare NA’s survey found that 68 percent of men who plan on shopping on Black Friday or Cyber Monday have a specific budget in mind. About 55 percent of women said they’re going into those shopping days with plan. When breaking the same question down by age groups instead, millennial shoppers took the majority: 76 percent of shoppers ages 18-34 answered in the affirmative, versus 59 percent of shoppers ages 35-54 and 37 percent from ages 55 and over.

Men also plan on spending nearly 69 percent more than women during these shopping events. On average, the survey found, men said they expect to spend an average of $417 on Black Friday and/or Cyber Monday. In comparison, women anticipate that they’ll spend an average of $247—nearly 69 percent less.

“Interestingly enough, the research shows that Black Friday and Cyber Monday may be a bigger deal for men versus women, and for millennial shoppers as compared to other age groups,” says Joe Migliozzi, Managing Director, Global Head of Shop+ for Mindshare. “There’s no one silver media bullet for reaching those groups—but ultimately, you start by grounding your commerce strategies in audience data and insights and building off of that. The right media plan will leverage those not just from the start, but with adaptive strategies throughout the holidays.”

The Millennial Plan

Apart from looking at men and women’s competing approach, Mindshare also dived into the differences that Millennials represent in terms of holiday shopping plans.

For one thing, men and Millennials see Black Friday and Cyber Monday as bigger opportunities for sales versus other audiences looking for discounts year-round, Mindshare says.

For example, 69 percent of men say that they can get deals on Black Friday that they can’t get at any other time (versus 58 percent of women), while 72 percent of Millennials say the same thing. About 63 percent of those 35-54 and 48 percent for those ages 55 and up feel the deals are a easier to come by during the two main holiday shopping days.

  • Those ages 35-54 plan on spending the most, with an average of $356.
  • Millennials aren’t far behind with anticipated spending of $338.
  • For those ages 55 and higher, the number drops to $244.
  • Men and Millennials are also more likely to camp outside stores before they open—56 percent of male shoppers said that they do so, versus 29 percent of female shoppers. And, 58 percent of shoppers ages 18-34 do so, versus 42 percent of shoppers ages 35-54 and 14 percent of shoppers ages 55 and up.

The Showrooming Situation

The problem of showrooming has plagued brick-and-mortar retailers as e-commerce has continued to rise.

Mindshare found that 58 percent of shoppers use their phones when in-stores to check prices on items. For men, that rises to 66 percent versus 49 percent of female shoppers.

While retailers like Target have sought to enhance their omnichannel strategies in order to attract online shoppers with convenient services like in-store pickup, the bottom line for consumers of all stripes during the holiday season is “who’s got the best deal.”

A sizable amount of Mindshare’s survey 37 percent describe themselves as “Value-Driven.” While we can safely assume that simply means shoppers want deals, it can also be interpreted that the shopping experience, whether online or in-store, needs to simply make sure prices are aligned with the ability to find exactly what one is looking for as efficiently as possible.

Price is just one way creating a baseline for measuring those expectations. That’s why more than half of Mindshare survey respondents (56 percent) would like a way to check if an item is in store before they get there.

“This was the leading category for both men and women, but it leans substantially more towards women – 45 percent are in this category, versus 29 percent of men,” Mindshare says. “Older demographics are also seen more here: 40 percent of shoppers ages 35-54 and 55+ described themselves as such, versus 32 percent of 18-34 year olds.”