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Gender Marketing: How Brands Show Ads to Men and Women

Gender marketing, advertising tricks for men and women

When studying the behavior and reaction of women and men to advertising, we understand that by 2023, gender stereotypes will fade into the background, and the concept of gender will become vague. People are becoming less and less receptive to gendered marketing. Some companies are already moving to "neutral" advertising, and we'll talk about them too. However, when setting up targeted advertising, we still choose the gender of the audience. There are still holidays for women and men, and men and women still have differences, as many studies show.

Differences in the perception of women and men on advertising

According to neurophysiologist Louann Brizendine, author of the books "Female brain" and "Male brain", women have proportionally larger brain volume in the frontal lobes responsible for decision making and situation control, while men have better developed departments responsible for perception of space and reaction to danger. 

According to the American study, 85% of purchases are made by women, while in half of the cases they are buyers of traditionally male goods. In most cases, targeting ads for men's products only to men, there is a high probability of not reaching the target audience. This must be taken into account when creating advertising, gender marketing must include a radical modern way of buying behavior.

The Association of E-commerce Companies (AKIT) conducted a study of online commerce in the first half of 2017, from which it became known that during sales, men are willing to spend more than women. 

According to Louann Brizendine's books mentioned above, women are more empathetic and more attentive to new information. They are attracted to what draws from feelings and sensations. When buying goods, women are easier to contact, and it is easier for them to evoke emotions that lead to a sale.

Men are not very attentive to details and pay attention to the functionality of the product and the status of the owner. Also, men perceive short formulations better and are more loyal to jokes/provocations. Also, men often prefer competition, while women desire to be strong and stand out.

Differences in gendered marketing

Gender marketing examples

The research is clear, now let's look at specific examples of commercial aimed at men and women.

An example of a "male" beer ad showing competition and violence in a joking way:

A funny commercial for men's shampoo showing the difference between men's and women's goods. By the way, this is an example of 2 in 1 advertising, when both men's and women's shampoo are advertised in one video:

We wrote above women make that 85% of purchases, while in half of the cases they are buyers of traditionally male goods.

Popular Old Spice commercial with Terry Crews, which has 60 million views on YouTube, shows us the competitiveness of male Old Spice users. The advertisement itself directly addresses women, starting with the phrase "Hello, ladies." This is a great example of a good advertisement for a man's product:

Now you understand how brilliant this ad is.

Adverting targeted only at a female audience, on the contrary, often excludes humor and competition, demonstrating beauty and comfort in any situation. An obvious example:

Recently, advertisements often show the strength and independence of the female gender, embarking on the path of feminism. This works well for the female audience and brand loyalty. And that's why it's used in gender marketing.

For example, a Nike commercial about what are girls made of:

Or Dove ads in support of women suffering from public opinion:

Examples of unsuccessful gender advertising

Splitting and black-and-white thinking is a very sensitive issue, surrounded by stereotypes and public outcry. When creating ads only for men or women, in no case use discrimination when one gender is shown better / worse, or the image is assembled solely from outdated stereotypes and sexism. This is especially true for women's advertising. Gender marketing requires the dynamic use of changes in laws and social norms.

In the UK, the ASA published a 64-page report on how gender stereotyping in advertising "can lead to unequal gender outcomes in public and private aspects of people's lives", citing public opinion and various experts.

It included examples of unsuccessful banned advertising. For example, advertising a drink for weight loss Protein World:

Baby food advertisement in which a girl grows up to be a ballerina, and a boy grows up to be a mathematician:

Also Kate upton Game of war commerical:

The Gillette advert in 2019 was extremely unsuccessful:

The video caused a public outcry, and calls to ignore Gillette. People in the comments still say that they have completely abandoned the brand's products. The fact is that the video was accused of showing toxic masculinity. Although some backed the company, Procter & Gamble suffered heavy losses.

Gender-neutral stance

In 2023, the most innovative brands are moving away from gender-based ads to neutral marketing campaigns. Often, this approach can help a company expand its target audience and increase brand loyalty.

For example, gender marketing would include the sale of pink clothes for girls and blue clothes for boys. Although in fact you can lose sales of pink clothes to boys and vice versa.

Many toy stores have categorized toys by age, product category, and brand, rather than labeling them as "boys" or "girls."

Product description as an example of gender neutral marketing

Examples of gender marketing ads

Harley-Davidson, a traditionally "male" motorcycle brand in the past, claims to account for 62 percent of the female market, making it the best-selling women's motorcycle brand in the United States. Using more than just men in its ads, in 2013 the company sold more new road bikes to women in the US than all other brands combined.

Ads for men

H&M released unisex clothing as part of the 2017 collection, including both women and men in advertising, increasing sales by moving away from the gender in marketing division strategy:

Barbie, which has always made dolls only for girls, released a commercial with Moschino 7 years ago, in which both girls and a boy played with dolls, for which they received praise from fans:

And finally, a few gender-neutral advertising examples:

An example of a neutral razor ad

Couples breakfast ad

An example of an advertisement for boys

Perfume gender advertising for both

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