The impact of gendered content in printed health advertisements on attitudes and behavioural intentions: a mixed methods study in a social marketing campaign
social role theory
Subject Categories::N500 Marketing
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AbstractThe aim of this study is to contribute to the Marketing field examining whether the use of gendered content in leaflets promoting physical activity has an impact on attitudes and behavioural intentions of the UK general public. Drawing on elements of social role theory and homophily theory for its theoretical background, this study adopts an explanatory mixed methods approach for the data collection. Firstly, through a quantitative phase and quasi-experimental research design, 247 individuals from the general public were surveyed to examine the impact of the use of communal (i.e. feminine) and masculine (i.e. agentic) wording and endorser gender in a marketing campaign. This was followed up through qualitative semi-structured face-to-face interviews with 20 participants from the general public to gain further insights on the communicative elements of the leaflets and some insights into the participants’ existing behaviour and attitudes. The study indicates that gendered wording is effective in combination with certain gendered content when targeted at a specific sex. This work adds to the knowledge in the field of health marketing communications originally combining in an integrated framework of social role theory and homophily theory. Results from this study suggest that the theory is still relevant for males, as agentic communications and a male endorser showed a significant result for males. On the other hand, the results for females were more complex regarding social role theory and homophily theory, as neither communal nor agentic communications nor male or female endorser were significant, therefore other theories may be more useful for communications. The implications for knowledge and practice from this study provide a contribution as to which gendered combinations should and should not be used in the context of health promotion. This has not been considered previously, giving significant findings for future research directions and practical implementation in health communications.
CitationBaxter, K. (2020) 'The Impact of Gendered Content in Printed Health Advertisements on Attitudes and Behavioural Intentions: A Mixed Methods Study in a Social Marketing Campaign'. PhD thesis. University of Bedfordshire.
PublisherUniversity of Bedfordshire
TypeThesis or dissertation
DescriptionA thesis submitted to the University of Bedfordshire, in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy
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