Men are frequently marketed products promoting strength or an outdoor lifestyle, but women tend to be left out of this domain, leaving open an important opportunity for brands to produce female-oriented products with a more ‘rugged’ image, according to consumer insight firm Canadean.
A Canadean report based on a global survey concludes that ‘rugged’ products catering towards men, such as protein-rich yogurt featuring ‘manly’ designs, are well established on the market, yet women who would like to be associated with brands conveying these values remain overlooked.
Canadean Analyst Veronika Zhupanova says women, generally speaking, have innumerably diverse interests beyond appearance, cooking and calorie counting, and don’t want to be seen as fragile.
“Indeed, women are not necessarily interested in typically ‘feminine’ products which promote such a limited lifestyle, desiring instead to be seen as enjoying life to the full,” she said. “This means the demand for brands conveying ‘ruggedness’ in products aimed at women will grow.”
The survey found that 54 per cent of women respondents agreed with the statement, ‘I like to buy food and drink products that are reflective of my attitudes and opinions in life’ (as opposed to 50 per cent of the men). Fifty-five per cent of the women interviewed also agreed with the statement, ‘I like to buy personal-care products that are reflective of my attitudes and opinions in life’ (as opposed to 43 per cent of the men).
Ms Zhupanova says manufacturers should be mindful to include both male and female role models in marketing campaigns and avoid overtly masculine packaging designs.
“Making products look more exciting and focusing on their attributes rather than which gender they cater for will appeal to women who feel undermined by the ‘pink it and shrink it’ positioning,” she said.