Oral Presentation

How Companies Can Expand Their Traditional Gender Markets: A Look at Reversed Gender Advertisements

As female oriented companies like Dove and Mattel and male oriented companies like Coors Light and Ram Trucks start to branch out from their mainly one sided gender markets to start targeting opposite gender consumers, a new trend is starting to arise; cross gender advertisements. Cross or reversed gender advertisements are those in which a traditionally male product is promoted to women and a traditionally female product is promoted to men. The current research conducted on reversed gender advertising indicates that matching a spokesperson's gender to the gender of the product results in higher rates of purchase intention from the audience than if the spokesperson's gender does not match the gender of the product. However, researchers studying this topic have not yet looked at moderating factors that may account for why this is the case. The purpose of this study is to identify possible moderators that may affect an individual's purchase intentions of a product that was advertised in a reversed gendered way, such as an individual's culture, prior experience with the product or service, and whether or not they saw the advertisement in a public or private setting. An experiment will be conducted with college students. This study holds managerial implications by giving organizations greater insights on how to approach reversed gender advertisements in a way that minimizes the risk of consumer backlash and provides a way to keep up with competitors branching out of their main gender markets.