Gender is another way to segment consumers. As we explained in Chapter 3 "Consumer Behavior: How People Make Buying Decisions", men and women have different physiological and other needs. They also shop differently. Consequently, the two groups are often, but not always, segmented and targeted differently. Marketing professionals don’t stop there, though. For example, because women make many of the purchases for their households, market researchers sometimes try to further divide them into subsegments. (Men are also often subsegmented.) For women, those segments might include stay-at-home housewives, plan-to-work housewives, just-a-job working women, and career-oriented working women. Women who are solely homemakers tend to spend more money research has found—perhaps because they have more time.
In addition to segmenting by gender, market researchers might couple people’s genders along with their marital statuses and other demographic characteristics. For, example, did you know that more women in America than ever before (51 percent) now live without spouses? Can you think of any marketing opportunities this might present? 1