Category Archives: Women’s behaviour

The marketing target « mothers/daughters »: opportunities and risks


Isabelle Decoopman and Elodie Gentina two Management Science Doctors and associated Professors with Skema business school, took an interest in the “clothes sharing” between mothers and daughters (2012). (1) This marketing phenomenon, revealing the importance of youth in Western society, raises many questions. How can brands benefit from this? What are the limits? Is it just a fleeting trend or it is going to last? The two researchers have precisely analyzed this behavior to create a measurement tool for businesses.

The praise of « youth culture »

« Looking young has become the dominant trend in adult clothing: back in the days, you had to show off honorific signs of your wealth, nowadays, we must look young, forever young, » said the philosopher and sociologist Gilles Lipovetsky in his latest book « The aestheticization of the world.  » (2)

The trend « mother-daughter » is part of the logic of trying to keep looking young, principally present in our society where the body has become a capital. Whatever the social life fields: Workplace, relationship, etc., men and women are subject to stiff competition and must capitalize on their appearance. Youth, synonymous with dynamism is particularly valued.

Femininity: a transmission

Beyond the cult of youth, the real underlying issue about “sharing clothes” between mother and daughter is the domination of femininity in the family. When a mother shares clothes with her teenage daughter, she enters a context of shared femininity. The teenager, a privileged target comparison for the mother is an action model that embodies femininity. The motivations are different if we take the point of view of the girl, the girl exchange clothes with her mother essentially for economic reasons (access to clothes at any cost) or because it is useful (enlarging wardrobe). Some girls play the clothing game exchanges with their mothers in order to learn femininity codes of (become a girl or a woman to become, not to be too sexy, not too neglected, etc..).

This is one of the results of the analysis and Elodie Isabelle Decoopman Gentina: « Through the co-shopping and clothing exchange, the mother seeks share of femininity with her teenage daughter, becoming a young woman. »(1)

When women’s emancipation meets marketing issues


The change on women’s status in the society has greatly impacted on various areas of social life. In professional world and marital relations, the role of women changed and shook up the established standards. If marketing has adapted to new offerings for women, the stereotype of the « housewife under 50″ is difficult to erase.

A gap between aspirations and practices

How can we explain the continuation of ‘clichés’? Sometimes accused of being sexist, the world of advertising, is not the unique responsible for the persistence of these traditions. It sometimes reflects simply facts. For example, the sociologist Martyne Perrot (CNRS) highlighted the consistency of gendered tasks towards groceries.

« I found that women, especially mothers, continue to play a crucial role in this area, where they always behave like real nursing mothers. I admit, I was surprised to observe how it is stills the same”. She adds that, « young mothers are extremely depending on current hygienists’ injunctions, whether it is about diet, the need to eat food without pesticides, or marketing messages that relay it all. »(1)

Mums are « social » on the Web


In April 2013, the website BabyCenter revealed a study named « Social Mums. » Combining several methodologies including quantitative, qualitative and audience research, the survey illustrates the digital behavior of « social » American mums.

Mums: fans of social network

Through the analysis of digital platform audiences (youtube, instagram, etc…), the “Social Mums” study suggests that mothers are particularly involved in these sharing spaces. 84% of mothers aged 18-34 regularly go on Facebook, compared to 73% of the general population. Similarly, with a rate of 26%, mothers aged 18-34 are more likely to access Youtube than the general population. A similar pattern emerges on other networks; this group is 79% more present on Instagram, 31% more numerous on Twitter and 58% more attracted by Pinterest than the general population.

Better connected, 36% of mums have over 250 friends on Facebook whereas the same is true only 23% of the general population is concerned. Similarly, 46% of respondents reported having more than 50 Pinterest connections, in comparison with 38% of the general population.

Women’s Digital Entertainment


Movie fans, smartphone users, tablet addicts… women have adopted the digital culture. However, although the new media (smartphones, tablets) has entered into their everyday lives, they have not surrendered their usual cultural practices (films, television, and reading).

Unisex media behavior

The lives of women differ from that of men. The Media study “in Life de Médiamétrie” published in 2012 makes it clear that the lives of women are more marked by “routine activities” than men’s; they vary between activities such as personal care, taking meals, shopping, relationships with family and friends, recreation (taking a walk, going to the theater), or domestic activities. In contrast, the « routine activities » of men are primarily work or studies. (1)

Women and Cars: a long-standing history


For many years now, automakers have been trying to attract women; they do this by expanding their product offers and developing their designs, those range between rounded design, colour variations, sales of electric cars and many more. In order to decrypt the special relationship women have with this traditionally male sector, Yoann Demoli, PhD in Sociology, specialist in automotive offers closer look. (1)

Do women and men have the same look on cars?

When we asked if they enjoy driving, women respond twice as often as men that they do not like to drive. If getting older makes men less likely to enjoy getting behind the wheel, it does not seem like a decisive factor for women: their dislike of driving seems independent from the age, however, men and women mostly say that they love to drive (75%).

Men and women have different uses of cars. Looking at the indicator of the distance travelled by each gender, we see that men drive about 20% more than women on average. Such differences are found between all individuals, even if their course or their demographics characteristics are very different.

Given the very different qualities of men and women’s car fleet, I think that men and women differently weigh what they can expect from a car (comfort object, subject of achievement, aesthetic object or utility object).

The Handbag: a revelation of the daily life of women


Interview with Jean-Claude Kaufmann, sociologist

Daily partner, « self extension « , handbags assists women in their everyday lives. Both as a fashion accessory but also as a sentimental object, handbags carry many meanings. The evolution of the women status in society is reflected in their handbag. Through its content, it reveals the importance of family tasks still on the shoulders of women, but also the women’s desire to being « wonder women ».

You have developed extensive research on specific objects: laundry and handbags. To what extent did you choose those more than others?

We could say that all objects can have something to say. Sometimes they are embedded in the ordinary, the routine, almost invisible, and just suddenly, they have a shallow function you can highlight. Other times, it is difficult to understand. In particular, I tried to conduct a survey on the front door. For me, it was an object that symbolizes the crossing of the ground in all civilizations. However, I failed; this was because people did not want to talk about it. It is not that the subject had nothing to say, but it was hard to explain.

The EveryDay Life Effect, A Source of Well-Being


In April 2013, the P&G Group (Pampers, Ariel, Always, Gillette, Braun …) published a study entitled « The EveryDay Effect » aimed at understanding the power of habits, more specifically the impact of everyday actions and those relative to one’s happiness, well-being and development. This study was conducted in March 2013 with 12,364 people in twelve European countries. (1)


« The idea of routine has a bad image in public opinion: ‘it is necessary to break the habits’, ‘break the daily grind!’ It seems to evoke only repetition and boredom, narrow and sad lives through recurrence of repetitive meaningless actions (…),” says Jean-Claude Kaufmann, a sociologist and director of research at CNRS, he adds: “But there is another completely different side to everyday life, more reassuring and promising. It is even considered as the main feature of the human condition, a structural link that makes sense of and helps build our relationships. » (1)

Are Women Crazy About Smartphones?


In April 2013, aufeminin.com in partnership with eBay, revealed a study on the relationship between women and their mobiles. (1) How do they use their mobile phones? Where, when and how do they use them? What benefits do they obtain from them in their everyday lives? How do they perceive online shopping on their mobiles (m-commerce)? Here is the precise decoding of an online survey of 3,000 Internet users in seven European countries: Belgium, France, Germany, UK, Italy, Spain and Poland.

How do mothers use their mobile phones?


It goes without saying that nowadays mobile phones and smartphones play a fundamental role in women’s everyday lives. More specifically though, what about mothers? How can we measure their mobile media consumption? These were the questions raised in a study conducted by InMobi in December 2012 in partnership with Decision Fuel with 1523 respondents from 14 countries (1).

Entitled « A ‘new wave’ takes shape », the study demonstrates the changes in mobile media usage amongst mothers. On a global scale, women tend to multi-task more and more; sending text messages or browsing the web on their smartphones whilst watching TV. The mobile has also become an indispensable tool for brands to influence purchasing amongst women who tend to tolerate ads on this new medium. Thus opening a whole host of opportunities to marketers.

The mobile phone: the first device support for mothers

Women reportedly spend 7 hours per day using media. Although this in itself is important to take into account, it is the distribution of this media consumption which particularly draws our attention. In fact mobile media usage counts for 102 minutes, ahead of fixed internet usage (99 minutes), television (96 minutes), radio (48 minutes), tablets (41 minutes), and finally 33 minutes of reading i.e. magazines and newspapers. In other words, on a global scale, 24% of the media consumption amongst mothers is carried out on their mobiles.

What do women think of mobile tablets?


At the end of 2009, Apple announced that it was launching the iPad in the United States and the rest of the world. In 2010, Samsung entered this promising market with its Galaxy Tab, Sony followed in 2011 with the Sony Tablet. The tablet extends the possibilities for surfing, online shopping and web searches.

Four years after the launch of the first tablet, the French, in particular, adopted this innovation with a penetration rate of 10%, about 3 million French households. (1) Both men and women have been tempted by this innovative medium. In fact, the distribution of the iPad is homogeneous across men and women since 2 million women are equipped with a tablet, the same rate as for men. (2)

According to Gartner, U.S. Consulting and Research Company in the field of advanced technology, the growth of tablet sales should be exponential in the coming years. Between 2012 and 2017, PC sales are expected to decline by 20.4% in the world to reach 271.612 million units, while tablet sales will reach nearly 468 million units. (3)