Is There a Gender Gap Among Social Media Users?

14 Jun

As marketers, we know that there is a difference in  how we influence men and women. Each sex has different priorities in  lifestyles, work habits, and communication methods. So it makes sense that men  and women would join different social media sites, participate at different
times and amounts, and interaction styles would vary as well. In order to  target your proper audience, you need to understand how each gender approaches the  social media as a medium.

Men traditionally will try new technology first and do  spend more time on the Internet than women. Men are using social media in huge  numbers, both personally and for business, but women participate even more  (Rapleaf, Inc. survey of 13.2 million people). There is much more competition
to attract men technologically from video games, and the automotive and tool  industries. So interestingly, as long as women outpace the men, sites are  likely to cater more to them, widening this gap even further. With the  exception of business-oriented sites like LinkedIn, men are avoiding social  interaction sites, but women are attracted to this method of communication. Women  will also spend more quality time on each site, designing its layout, waiting  for replies to posted questions or comments, in essence building relationships.  They post pictures and create huge albums. Women use social media as a  discussion medium, as a way to share personal information, and interact. Men  tend to jump in and out more quickly, obtain information, or build up their
status and log out.

The corporate world could be affected heavily by  this gender gap. Women audiences are far more available to be hired from social  media sites, which is the number one growing method of attracting new  executives. Talent in writing and engaging customers online is crucial for  marketing, customer service, and sales managers; and companies see women more  able to possess this skill. Women as consumers have heavier purchasing power  and tend to tell their friends and associates on their social media connections  about what they purchased. They will also stay online longer, searching for
coupons and sales, will be more thoughtful, and ask questions of other’s  experiences before purchasing.

Men aren’t being left out however. Where their  gender counterparts use social media to interact, men use social media  sites more to achieve something for themselves  such as a connect with a potential mate, purchase a product or service, get  information, or close a deal or sale. Sites like YouTube tend to be tied for  men and women because of its high usage to play music videos, post videos both  personal and business. The gap narrows also for Twitter perhaps one reason
being is it provides that quick satisfaction and not a lot of personal  interaction.

Women “get” social media. They use it as it was made to be used, as an immediate communication of information. When women get  together, they chat, mingle, build relationships, and they share. When men  gather, they want action of some kind; playing a game, sport, drinking, or  driving, and they compete. While this may be an over generalization, more  importantly this is what studies are showing from the big social media sites  and the corporations that rely on attracting major numbers of users. More of the users are women and to these females these sites will cater.

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