What Is Low Brow Marketing?


Low Brow Marketing – The New Target Market
To understand low brow marketing, an understanding of the classification “low brow” is necessary. Most individuals recognize the classification, “high brow.” as meaning “upper class” or those with identifiable superiority. For example, classical music has often been referred to as “high brow.” Using this example, today’s rap and punk music might be referred to as “low brow.”

In marketing, there is a perfected skill of targeting buyers according to their lifestyles and “classes.” Thus, certain low brow marketing often specializes in targeting young, casually dressed and casually entertained classes of people.

Low brow marketing is today’s new target market for a good reason: economic differences between lifestyles of the high brow, upper classes and low brow, lower classes. Mid brow is the description given to those who fall between low brow target markets and high brow target markets.

What is Low Brow Marketing?
Low brow marketing specifically targets the lion’s share of today’s buyers. In this class of buyers, sales and marketing is directed toward capturing the attention of lower middle classes and to encourage purchases like denim jeans, sneakers, latest hi-tech gadgets and the hottest trends in foods.


Price plays an important role in low brow marketing. To further broaden the spectrum of the answer to what low brow marketing is, study buying habits of today’s youth and middle aged low brow. These would be the individuals who may or may not have completed a college degree, work in jobs that don’t necessarily portend higher level promotions or salaries and buy goods according to their personal perceptions of “need.” Clearly, low brow marketing entails pitching sales to a major portion of today’s buying community.

Pitching Sales to the Low Brow
In high brow sales, there exists the element of highly educated, financially endowed buyers who place particular stress on purchases that are one-of-a-kind and finest quality for which they are willing to pay highest prices.

Low brow sales are constricted by the need to make goods and services appealing and affordable. Eliciting profits in low brow markets are more difficult as a result of these constrictions.

However, the advantage in low brow sales occurs in quantity, rather than quality. Low brow target markets are more likely to buy in volume, often ignoring quality. One thing both high brow and low brow target markets have in common is a keen sense of how sales are pitched in the media.

Know the Low Brow Market by Its Style
Style definitely plays a large role in defining low brow target markets. Knockoffs of top designer apparel and accessories are perfectly acceptable as purchases in low brow markets.

High brow markets demand absolute assurance they are spending their money on exclusive, designer clothes and other goods. Conversely, on an average day on any New York City street, copies of designer handbags, sunglasses and numerous other accessories are hawked and bought by low brow buyers who can’t afford Gucci or Coach handbags. They crave the style of these designers and are willing to purchase a “knockoff,” to achieve their style standards. A study of the style of low brow markets shows an inherent desire to look as good as the high brow without the cost.

Sales and Low Brow Marketing
The perception that sales and low brow marketing is an easy task isn’t accurate. The first obstacle in this marketing genre is to correctly target the age group, the lifestyles and the purchasing power of those considered “low brow.”

In terms of age, low brow marketing can overlap from those in their young twenties to seniors on fixed incomes. The conundrum for low brow marketers is to comprehensively saturate all ages within low brow markets.

Lifestyles also affect low brow marketing. It may include first time buyers of college age or seasoned older buyers. First time buyers know less about purchasing and terms of payment and may be settling into independent, adult lifestyles. For example, first time buyers of furnishings have sparse experience with financing procedures, terms of payment and responsibility for payment of purchases. Though they may be mindful of spending, they can be an easier sale to close. Seasoned, older buyers are more likely to watch their expenditures. This makes closing a sale more difficult.

Nonetheless, this low brow sector of the markets offer sales and marketing professionals and businesses an opportunity to create resales and a reliable customer base. This is more difficult with older, more experienced buyers, particularly those on fixed incomes.

How Purchasing Power Impacts Low Brow Marketing
Purchasing power is a vital part of high, mid and low brow marketing. Clearly, the high brow target markets have the most purchasing power given their financial stability. Mid brow target markets may possess stable purchasing power; but, they may also have other major priorities that preclude free spending. Low brow target markets are impacted by buyers with limited purchase power. This implies that low brow marketing, of necessity, should be aimed at creating a greater “need” for goods and services in order to encourage buying and increase sales. Creating need in quantity is how purchasing power impacts low brow marketing.

More Low Brow Marketing than High Brow
Low brow marketing strategists have an advantage over high brow marketing experts. When an economy begins to contract, the likelihood is the growth of a larger pool of low brow target markets as the majority and high brow markets in the minority. Low brow marketing becomes highly competitive and therefore, highly creative in strategies deemed necessary to maintain adequate sales and marketing bases.

The other significant factor in play at present is the overall tendency of the growing number of low brow buyers to alter their lifestyles. Their lifestyles are downsized in accordance with purchasing power and financial constrictions.

The Future of Low Brow Marketing
Conceivably, the future of low brow marketing may become firmly embedded as first time buyers learn more about their buying habits and older buyers focus more on “need” rather
than “want.”