The unique predictive ability of sex-role identity in explaining women's response to advertising



This study explores and compares the separate contributions of masculinity, femininity, and androgyny in explaining women's response to modern and traditional sex-role portrayals in print advertisements. It also considers whether sex-role identity captures unique predictive information above and beyond specific demographic variables. This study consisted of a field experiment among 200 adult women; each respondent was exposed to several carefully prepared print ads. The findings suggest that sex-role identity is a useful predictor of women's response to advertisements. Moreover, masculinity is the driving force in explaining women's response to the tested ads. Androgyny, however, adds no incremental predictive ability. The findings indicate that sex-role identity does capture new information, unexplained by specific demographic variables. © 1994 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.