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UK consumers follow brands on social media platforms for a number of reasons. Unsurprisingly in this era of austerity, most do so in order to receive offers and discounts in return.
However, recent research by Disruptive Communications found that this type of behavior was more prevalent among women than men. Among female internet users, 44.5% of respondents cited offers and discounts as a reason for following brands, vs. 36.5% of males.
Saving money was still top of mind for men, but larger proportions of male survey respondents cited information as a key reason for following brands—15.7% said they wanted practical help and product information (vs. 11.7% of women), and 16.9% were interested in product news, compared with 11.5% of females.
These gender differences are not all that surprising when one considers the browsing habits of UK internet users. According to Ipsos OTX and Ipsos Global @dvisor, more women than men said they visited brand retail sites regularly—35% of females surveyed in August 2013 said they did so at least once a week, vs. 23% of men—while slightly more women visited shopping sites regularly. Men were more likely to visit news and information sites, with 45% stating they did so at least once a week, outpacing female respondents by 10 percentage points.
It seems that certain stereotypes from the physical world around shopping habits carry over into the digital realm and, by extension, social media platforms. Women like to shop more than men, and they are often on the lookout for deals. Males, on the other hand, while still money-conscious, are much more about remaining informed.
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