In a shift, Lowe's targets men in ad

An article in Tuesday's New York Times reveals Lowe's is making a shift in its approach to advertising by directly courting male DIYers.

The article, under the headline "Lowe's Campaign Keeps Eye on the Weather," describes a 60-second TV spot planned for the upcoming college basketball tournament. In the ad, men pretend to compete in sports using hand tools and other home improvement merchandise. The ad aired Sunday during a Nascar race. 

Lowe's is already one of the biggest brands on the Nascar track, as the retailer is the sponsor of superstar driver Jimmie Johnson. But the TV ads mark a new direction for the company's advertising. 

The campaign, which is expected to run through June, also includes digital spots that will tailor the message to the specific weather conditions in various regions of the country.

Supporting the concept that the time is right to promote spending on the home, the article also pointed to research from the Home Improvement Research Institute (HIRI) that forecast home improvement spending to increase 4.3% in 2013, after a 2012 increase of 5.4%. On a constant dollar basis, the 2013 growth would actually accelerate from 2.9% last year to 3.4% this year.

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