15 Gender Stereotypes Young Women Wish Advertisers Would Stop Using

Millennial research, Millennial insight, Millennial marketing, Gen Z research, Gen Z marketing, Gen Z insight, youth research, youth marketing

Wondering how to reach Millennial & Gen Z females today? We asked 13-35-year-olds all about gender stereotypes...

In the past few years, the growing feminist movement has reached mass acceptance among Millennials and Gen Z: 63% of 18-34-year-old women call themselves feminists, according to the Washington Post, and in the wake of #MeToo, the movement is only getting stronger. Many 13-35-year-old females want to change the representation and perception of women, and there are implications for brands. Mainly, young consumers are putting pressure on brands to make their marketing less “girly” and more gender-neutral. Just last week, a Twitter storm hit PepsiCo when their C.E.O divulged the details behind their plans to create chips more suited for women in an episode of Freakonomics Radio. “Lady Doritos” started to trend on social media soon after, with many women sarcastically pointing out that instead of equal pay or an end to sex discrimination, they were getting their own chips.

Despite Doritos calling the reports “inaccurate,” the swift backlash just goes to show that Gen Z and Millennial females are fed up with gender profiling and want brands to do better. The Genreless Generation is demanding that more brands embrace the gender blur, with nearly eight in ten 13-33-year-olds saying it’s ok for girls to be masculine and for guys to be feminine and over half of 13-35-year-olds recently telling us that brands shouldn’t consider gender at all when targeting messages. 

To get a better sense of exactly what tropes they wish would disappear, we asked 13-35-year-old females, “What is one stereotype about your gender you wish advertisers would stop using?”* Here are their top 15 answers:

*These were open-end response questions to allow us to capture the full range of gender stereotypes…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

Quote of the Day: “[It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia is] my favorite satirical/dark comedy for the past 12 seasons and it hasn't dipped in quality since.”—Male, 21, NY

Nike’s new store puts mobile use at the center of the experience. Using geo-fencing, Nike knows when a customer walks into their 68,000 square foot space and changes the app accordingly. Users can see tailored content and offers, book styling appointments on-site, scan mannequins to have product delivered to their dressing room, and more. Based on the success of similar stores in L.A. and Shanghai, Nike execs hope their new flagship will build up Nike’s Brandom, and drive app downloads in the process. (Ad Age)

Jell-O is rolling out edible slime kits. Their Unicorn and Monster kits cash in on the slime trend, which has been booming in the anxiety economy for at least three years. Elmer’s, Cra-Z-Art, and Nickelodeon were all quick to tap the trend for marketing and products while Jell-O is a little late to the party. But considering that 82% of teens told Ypulse last year that they’ve participated in at least one trending activity to relax, there might still be time to capitalize. (Vox)

BuzzFeed is getting into the retail game, with plans to open family-focused stores across the country, starting in NYC. The brick-and-mortar venture, called Camp, will sell toys and apparel to Millennial parents and their kids, and the first is scheduled to open in time to capture some holiday spending. The concept is copying Story by changing up products and experiences every eight to 12 weeks, because, “we want to deliver adventure every time they come to the store.” (Ad Age)

Pharma companies are using influencers for social media marketing. Wego is a platform that connects patients with social media followings to pharmaceutical companies for marketing activations, like posts about drugs and devices. One company at least has seen success using the approach: Sunovian's earned media impressions surged from fewer than 100,000 to more than 13.2 million after working with Wego. The biggest caveats to that cashflow could be abiding by FDA regulations and contending with “a myriad of ethical issues." (STAT)

Eighty-five percent of Millennials have purchased a product after viewing a branded videoThat’s nearly 10% higher than the adult average for the U.S, U.K., and Australia, according to Brightcove. In addition, 56% ranked videos as more engaging than any other marketing materials and 46% said its their favorite form of brand communication. They're also seeking Shoppable content: 30% said they're interested in videos containing purchase links. (Marketing Charts)

Quote of the Day: “Black-ish is my favorite show on air because it's informative, funny, relatable, and political…I know that I'll be entertained and maybe even learn something new or think critically about certain issues.”—Female, 22, PA

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