Around July last year, the Advertising Business Group AKA ABG set out to tackle a number of key industry issues, specifically around the representation of women and kids in Advertising. Communicate attended ABG’s annual event today where they unveiled the latest insights on the state of gender advertising. The study was conducted in association with Zayed University.
Why conduct the study?
The study was conducted as a result of the negative consequences, women have been forced to endure from media stereotyping. The impacts have led to issues such as body dissatisfaction, lack of self-confidence, etc.
How was the study monitored?
The study dived into looking as to whether people held personal about certain attributes or roles for men and women. There were two questions that needed to be addressed.
- How is agenda-stereotyping being portrayed in the region?
- How do people experience this?
The study focused on three portals. Television, Instagram and the Emirati audience.
Gender Stereotyping in Television in Gulf
- Television is an extremely popular medium in the region for advertising.
- The study focused on Advertisements broadcasted for a duration of one week and during the non-seasonal period.
- They ended up with 100 distinct advertisements as a sample.
- Focused on figuring out the central figure in the advertisements.
- Results showed that Females ranked about 85.7% in Home Products, 73.9% in Food and Beverages and 82.1% in Body products.
The study also looked at specific determinants such as Role, Location and Background.
Gender vs Role
Over 85% of home adverts had a woman as central character, most backgrounds had children or other women pic.twitter.com/i8obksQRkx
— ABG_GCC (@ABG_GCC) November 26, 2019
- Males ranked about 87% in autonomous roles i.e. office-related professions.
- However, 13% of Males were also represented in familial roles such as Father, Husband, etc.
- Females ranked about 49.3% in familial roles.
- But the study also found that about 41.8% of females were presented in autonomous roles as well.
Gender vs Location and Background
- Most males were portrayed in an occupational location such as, in an office setting while females were portrayed in a homely location. But the number of females portrayed in an occupational location was not far behind.
- When it comes to backgrounds in the sample advertisements, females were more likely portrayed with children in the background.
While the data tells that advertising in the region still mirrors traditional gender stereotyping, it also shows promise that we’re making progress in changing them as well.
Emirati Perception of Gender Stereotyping
When a large focus group of Emiratis was presented with different advertorials portraying men and women in different roles, the results showed that the majority were less resistant to advertising creatives which portrayed a twist in traditional gender roles. The brand liking was also unaffected.
Media is a powerful tool that is able to shape beliefs and influencer behaviors and actions. It is the responsibility of brands to broadcast positive messages for both boys and girls and pursue to eradicate gender stereotyping.