A male brain is about 10% larger than the female brain and has 5% more brain cells. That sounds like good news for men but the female brain more than makes up for its disparity in size in other ways. Out of all other comparisons that are being made between the sexes; we will focus on whether women make better marketers than men! Seems like a difficult judgement to make, your opinions are most welcome, make your case in the comment section.
Men are stronger, does that count?
Men are stronger than women, generally, strength-wise that is. And therefore men were supposed to earn the bread for the family; while women being soft, kind and empathetic were good with things that requires something other than strength. While men, assuming inheritance of strength and decisiveness, didn’t ever have to prove it to the other sex – never really cared of what the other sex will evolve into in order to prove the worth. For all you can guess, this is a story, eons ago – when strength was required to earn the bread.
Well, this gets us closer to our question. For one thing, it doesn’t now and never did require body strength to make a phone call to the local shop keeper or to negotiate with the advertising agency you are working with. For another things, it doesn’t even require body strength to sit in a tractor with auto steer these days, anyway! So what may have been historically true about society certainly doesn’t need to be true about agriculture now or in the future.
With strength is taken out for our question at hand, the denominator is now equal for both sex and gets both under fair judgement.
Women Built for Empathy
Women are right brain thinkers. Women’s brains emerge as superior organs for communication and emotional understanding.
From an early age girls display much greater sensitivity to the suffering of others than boys and in adult life have a far greater ability to understand the thoughts and feelings of others. Baby girls, as young as 12 months old, respond more empathetically to the distress of other people. When asked to judge when someone might have said something potentially hurtful, girls score higher than boys from the age of seven years old.Women are also more sensitive to facial expressions. They are better at decoding non-verbal communication, picking up subtle nuances from tone of voice or facial expression, or judging a person’s character.
In contrast, men struggle with the challenge of understanding others. One recent study from Cambridge University has shown a link between the amount of testosterone a boy receives in the womb and his inability to establish eye contact with others as a small boy. The inference is that men, having had their brains bathed in testosterone for seven months, are much less able to establish an understanding and connection with others.
There is, perhaps, no greater skill for a marketer than empathy. While the media and outsiders tend to perceive marketing as a matter of spin and persuasion, the reality has always been very different. Marketing is fundamentally a challenge of understanding. Yes, later on we create advertising and packaging and other rhetorical tools, but the first and foremost issue for marketers is to understand their consumer and bring that understanding into the organisation.
Women Better at Brand Positioning
You guessed it, the toughest challenge in branding is articulating a clear positioning statement for the brand.
Another key distinction between the male and female brain is the way we approach problems. Women’s perceptual skills are oriented to quick, intuitive thinking. Men construct rules-based analyses of the natural world.
The Feminine Shift in Businesses
We are learning lately on how each consumer is a segment and understanding each consumer different from another – takes us away from the basic-est kotler-type-marketing-fundas of STP (Segmentation, Targeting and Positioning). The most fundamental shift in businesses that we see with time is in the people and how consumer gets in the center of all marketing efforts – which translates in to – shift from focus on numbers to relations. Or you can say the future of all successful businesses would be driven by right-brained thinkers; the connectors and communicators who possess a sense of design, story, symphony, empathy, play and meaning.
Is it Women or the Femininity
Every human is feminine and masculine! Females have feminine traits taking over the latter and for men – femininity is something they want to drop or hide. If it’s men & not women who do great in marketing, then its their feminine traits.
Does that suggest that marketing management styles are gender associated and that makes women successful in the marketing domain? I certainly believe women have an edge; however also it is the individual’s capacity and capability that makes one a better marketer. Every individual marketer has his/her own operational style, which is usually influenced by the culture of the company and gender edge subsides. At times, even great women marketers lose it if the culture isn’t a bolster.
Marketing is all about the ability to present one’s marketing skills to the consumer and making the right connect with them. And that is universal for both men and women and is not gender based. With socio-cultural barriers having come down, family and personal obligations having changed and women now being able to manage both home and business efficiently, we are seeing more women in the marketing fold.