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The Effects of Gender on Customer Loyalty

My name is Olivia Taurel, and I am an intern at Walker Information for the summer. At the end of my internship, I will be going back to Bloomington for my senior year at Indiana University, where I study Sociology and International Studies.  I take a particular interest in sociology courses surrounding gender issues, hence my excitement about this blog…

A recent study on gender differences in customer loyalty revealed some interesting and noteworthy results (Bijmolt, et al., 2009). The key takeaways from the article, “Are Women More Loyal Customers than Men? Gender Differences in Loyalty to Firms and Individual Service Providers,” are:

· Gender affects customer loyalty—women are more loyal to individual employees or service providers, and men are more loyal to groups of people or companies.

·Female customer defection should be anticipated when an employee leaves a company, therefore requiring readily available measures to accommodate for this possibility.

·Advertising strategies should correspond to the preferences of the gender of the customer base.

These results offer some managerial implications:

·Companies targeting women should encourage their employees to develop relationships with their customers, while companies with a predominantly male customer base can rely more on anonymous relationships with their customers.

·The focus of advertising strategies can and should be dependent upon the gender of the customer:

·Male-targeted advertising should focus on group themes.

·Female-targeted advertising should focus more on personal relationships.

While this research provides some interesting insight into the effects of gender on customer loyalty, it is one of the first to study the issue; further research needs to be conducted before generalization within B2C and B2B relationships can be established. This study does, however, bring some valuable information to the table that can assist with segmentation in a broader context. More information on this topic will follow.

Olivia Taurel

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