Why is Female Targeting More Accurate than Male?
Updated: Jan 4
One thing sticks out about gender targeting when we look across different providers: accuracy for women is significantly higher than for men. For male segments, the average was 54.3% accuracy across 37 segments. For female? 66.6%.
We spoke to some of our data providers who scored highly for gender accuracy, Throtle and Bridge, to ask what they thought the contributions for this were.
Bridge told us they were looking to get as close to the census as possible of all adults, but that their data does skew towards females. According to their data sets, there are more digital signals for the groups identifying as female. Women are online more, particularly on mobile channels more frequently throughout the day which lend a consumer identifier that is more persistent than a cookie, and they participate in more behaviors that drive accurate signals, such as online purchases. Bridge’s Chief Data Officer, Steve Horne, thought that this might be the driver. “We know females are making more online purchases, which provides more frequent and consistent signals for their identity. This leads to an over-representation for females as compared to the census.”
Throtle added a complementary perspective. Throtle’s data is based on connecting and linking all touchpoints to the correct individual. Women drive an estimated 70-80% of consumer purchasing. Whether directly or through their influence, women buy for the children and family in their lives and are also a driving force behind many popular trends including loyalty programs and subscription boxes. With this data, Throtle can see that the linkages and connections for females are more frequent and consistent.
“Other comprehensive, offline data sets, such as home purchases, car registrations, or home rentals, are gender neutral. The volume of purchase behavior tends to skew distinctly female. It’s imperative that brands target women consumers with informed, researched and data-driven approaches,” said Moira McKenna, CRO at Throtle.
It will be interesting to see if continuing changes in gender balances in many households rectifies this imbalance, as men contribute more to typically “female” chores, like grocery buying or shopping for children’s clothes. Only time will tell.
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