Fact: Girls develop the right side of brain faster than boys. What that means, and we all know, is that they’re talking sooner; they also develop more vocabulary and pronounce words more clearly. They often start reading earlier too. This accounts for better memory and all this apparently never changes.
On the other hand boys develop the left side faster than girls - This means that their visual, spatial-logical skills and perceptual skills develop sooner. They are often better at math, problem solving, building and figuring out puzzles. I believe, because they grow up with the confidence of early success in these areas it is carried through the rest of their lives.
Girls grow up with a perceived lack of or perception of inferior technical and logical skills. This belief follows most of them throughout their lives too and dictates the choices that they make and perhaps discourages them from accepting challenges in these specific areas.
In another unrelated study, Northwestern University, finds that men are more likely to share their creative work online than women despite the fact that women and men engage in creative activities at essentially equal rates”. Men will post more videos and share their code. Overall, almost two-thirds of men reported posting their work online while only half of women reported doing so.
Yet another similar study by Pew Internet & American Life Projects finds that “girls (presumably) write journals more often and more than boys, teen girls also tend to blog more than their male counterparts, but boys post more video, it says about 35 percent of all online teen girls blog, compared with only 20 percent of boys, according to the "Teens and Social Media."
All of these studies point to what we know, and that is, that these differences in their early development are demonstrated in their overall communication styles. Men and boys are more comfortable sharing things that show-off their technical prowess or subject matter depth. They will indulge in impersonal exchanges that culminate in something concrete- professional networking, a job, a date. On the other hand women/girls like to connect and communicate, period. Men can solve problems and issues but cannot talk randomly without a concrete agenda. If a woman shares something with a man he assumes that it is his job to resolve it, not understanding that for women, the act of sharing or simply saying something can be an end in itself.
Hence blogs are for girls and creating and sharing videos are for boys. Men are transactional, meaning: I will do this and this will happen. I will spend 15 minutes on facebook with you if I can get a date in return or at least a phone number. Or I will invest my time in LinkedIn because it might land me a job or increase my professional standing.
Women are social beings and just want to share. What they get in return is the satisfaction of belonging to a group or asserting their individuality by articulating what they believe in, their likes and dislikes. They grew up talking about themselves and are comfortable in social settings without agendas. In this era of social marketing, this fundamental difference in the way men and women interact with media and contribute to it must dictate our strategies and the tools we use to address specific communication goals.
Keeping these differences in mind when developing a campaign helps in creating solutions that resonate with the target audience. Many industry tech bloggers are thinking along these lines too... “ I am seeing a totally different behavior in male and female web surfing habits and am tempted to design my first website with two UIs - one for men and one for women because the perception of information between the sexes is definitely different.”
Calvin Klein was one of the earliest names to explicitly mention their unisex character for their fragrance brand “CK1” or something- an undifferentiated product for men and women.
Wonder how it’s doing now. If you have to address both men and women with the same message with an androgynous campaign then there may be enough common ground if you dig hard enough or skim just the top soil; however,these gender-bender strategies might be just as successful as unisex products!