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Product gender perceptions and antecedents of product gender congruence

Douglas L. Fugate (Department of Marketing and Sales, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, Kentucky, USA)
Joanna Phillips (Department of Marketing and Sales, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, Kentucky, USA)

Journal of Consumer Marketing

ISSN: 0736-3761

Article publication date: 4 May 2010

9663

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to replicate and extend earlier work on product gender perceptions.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology tested six hypotheses, using nearly 500 respondents. The hypotheses were investigated using a survey approach with validated scales. Likert‐type data were analyzed using appropriate statistical measures.

Findings

Analysis of the data demonstrated that product gendering is still prevalent. In addition, males were more likely than females to purchase gender‐congruent products; that individuals with a greater desire for product‐self‐congruence used products as a form of self‐concept; that individuals reared in non‐traditional households were less focused on gender congruence; that less traditional individuals were less focused on gender congruence; and that those who sought gender congruence were more likely to seek gender cues in the marketing mix.

Research limitations/implications

The product selection was based on a previous study and the sample was non‐random. Both of these decisions could be questioned.

Practical implications

These research results will allow one to understand whether social change during the past decade has altered product gender perceptions and to explore the degree to which consumers seek congruence between their own gender orientations and perceived product gender. This knowledge could be very important to consumer goods marketers making product design and promotional decisions.

Originality/value

The paper examines gender congruence in a maturing Generation Y, a generation second in size only to the Baby Boomers and one of significant market importance. It also provides the first substantive new data on this subject in over a decade.

Keywords

Citation

Fugate, D.L. and Phillips, J. (2010), "Product gender perceptions and antecedents of product gender congruence", Journal of Consumer Marketing, Vol. 27 No. 3, pp. 251-261. https://doi.org/10.1108/07363761011038329

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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