58 per cent ads target women exclusively, 35 per cent target both genders

Research by the Kantar Group has revealed the disconnect between consumer and business opinions of gender portrayals in advertising.

Published: 14th March 2019 04:46 PM  |   Last Updated: 14th March 2019 05:31 PM   |  A+A-

Feminism, Sexism, Misogyny

For representational purposes.

By PTI

MUMBAI: Marketers in India are missing potential opportunities to reach out to men in the categories where both genders are equal decision makers, according to a Kantar report. It revealed the disconnect between consumer and business opinions of gender portrayals in advertising.

The AdReaction report noted that 58 per cent ads on air target women exclusively, and only 35 per cent are targeted towards both genders.

While the clear majority of marketers globally (more than 75 per cent) think they are avoiding gender stereotypes, 76 per cent of female consumers and 71 per cent of male consumers believe that the way they are portrayed in advertising is completely out of touch, it said.

It noted that globally, gender-balanced brands drive greater brand value while brands that skew towards men tend to underperform and are valued on average USD 9 billion less, while only one in three brands achieve this balance in India.

In the wake of the 'MeToo' movement, the industry globally claims they are actively designing for both genders and representing them in a progressive context. But less female marketers are convinced with the way they are portraying men in the advertisements, it said.

It observed that getting the gender placement right is important, especially from a digital and static perspective because it can be used as a targeting and optimisation variable in these channels. It also noted that new information has the highest receptivity in India, more than 50 per cent men and women become more positive towards the ads that have new information.

This is closely followed by humour which has a critical role to play in improving the ad receptivity with both genders. "The report highlights that the bulk of ads in India are targeted at women, but marketers appear to be targeting them led more by stereotypes. Gender targeting should not be an either-or decision and we need to challenge these outdated assumptions. From a portrayals perspective, more emphases need to be made towards aspirational and authoritative roles. The industry as a whole needs to be more aware than ever that things need to change," said Vishikh Talwar-managing director- Kantar Millward Brown, South Asia.

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