Men are stepping up and are increasingly more open-minded about taking on traditionally female-centric household jobs like laundry, cleaning and cooking—and both men and women are frankly fed up with marketers’ female-focused approach to household-oriented messaging, according to a new study from Harbinger Communications, which specializes in marketing to women. Marketers would be wise to keep up with these changing roles, as it is likely to pay off on their bottom line—and they may want to re-evaluate their strategies.
“Consumers are prepared to open their wallets and show loyalty to brands that reflect modern gender-inclusive households in their marketing—and to disconnect from brands that don’t,” said Jennifer Lomax, vice president of strategic planning at Harbinger, in a news release.
Here are some of the survey highlights:
- 69% feel that brands unfairly portray gender roles or stereotypes with regard to household chores
- 71% would like to see brands portray men contributing to household chores more often
- 56% are more likely to purchase brands that show men and women contributing equally to household chores
Attitudinal shifts are opening doors for marketers to connect with the aspirational North American home by showing a more equitable division of household chores. The study also suggests an opportunity for brands to empower men to do more.
Women would appreciate more support in doing the laundry and cleaning in particular, as these are areas where women and men agree he could do more—nearly half (44%) of women say he is not doing his fair share of laundry and cleaning and nearly a third (30%) of men admit they are falling short in these areas.
One of the things that may be holding men back is a fear that they lack the skills or experience necessary to take on some of these household tasks. The study found “ability” is the top factor in how household jobs are assigned and an even more significant factor for men (47%) than women (42%).
“Men in particular may just need more confidence to overcome a perceived lack of ability for some jobs,” said Lomax. “Educating and empowering men to step up is a win-win marketing strategy, as both genders want to see men succeed in doing more around the home.”
In addition, Harbinger polled the membership of Ellevate Network, a global professional women’s network, to contrast their behaviors and attitudes against those of the average North American. Listen to the recorded webinar here.
Source: PR Newswire; edited by Richard Carufel