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Women buy more technology as their earnings rise

What are the real differences between men and women?  This is a question that has perplexed scientists, poets, economists and philosophers since the dawn of time. In modern civilisations, over time, artificial barriers have been successfully challenged and eradicated. As these barriers fall, does behaviour change?  KitGuru combines 2 recent, independent survey results to see what happens.

The Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings began its present method of calculating how much different people get paid for what they do, back in 1997. Analysing the differences in pay between men and women, here in the UK, 2010 saw the biggest change ever seen – with a full 2% decrease in pay differential. The largest single increase for women’s earnings came at  the crucial ‘bottom end of the pay scale’ where every improvement is felt far stronger in terms of its impact on people’s lives. Nice.

At the same time, London based research company Basis, has just completed a complete survey of buying trends in the UK. Interestingly, it was able to compare the kind of money that men and women both spend on IT-related products.

While thousands of variables were captured and compares, KitGuru likes the following graph – for one very specific reason. As time goes on, products develop and improve in terms of innovation, quality and value – while women continue to increase their earnings, so the spending pattern between the sexes levels off. The correlation between the amounts that people intend to spend in 2011 is remarkably close.

With almost no difference in the surveyed men and women's spending on technology in 2011, and with so much cash at stake, companies will need to redouble their marketing efforts to reach women intelligently

Head back to the 1970s and the most likely female vital statistics to be quoted in the media would read something like 36-24-36. Roll the clock forward to 2011 and the numbers have changed to 46-25-34. Nope, nothing to do with Atkins. These new numbers are all about ‘Which women are investing most in technology products’.

From Basis’ research, they found that 46% of all the money that women were likely to spend on technology in 2011, would come from the 25 to 34 age bracket. A further 20% is added by younger women in the 16 to 24 group. Ignoring, for a second, the huge influence that children can exert on any kind of spending – to know that 66% of the IT spend of half the population is controlled by women who sit in the 18 year gap from 16 to 34.

According to the Basis web site, experts like Charlotte Burke have spent the past 7 years considering the best way to bridge the gap from research to marketing and PR. We bet she's a guru of the kit.

KitGuru says: We’re no experts, but we’d assume that a shed-load of money is presently being invested in answering the question “Can you create a magazine, with technology advertising, that will be read by hundreds of thousands of woman aged 16 to 24?”. Whether there is an answer to that question or not, we’d guess that companies like Basis will do ‘very well indeed, thank you very much’ as they collect cheques from publishers who want to know.

Comments below or in the KitGuru forum.

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