Beer for Women: A Neuromarketing Investigation on the Effects of Beer Advertising on Female Consumers in Denmark

Matilde Rebori & Filippo Spagliardi

Student thesis: Master thesis


This exploratory study aims at shedding light on the perceptions and reactions of Danish women to different typologies of beer advertising. The goal is to demonstrate how more women-inclusive beer advertising better resonates with female Danish consumers than typical masculine beer advertising. This type of advertising can contribute to changing Danish women’s perception of beer from a prevalently masculine product to a genderless drink. We conduct a neuroscientific investigation on 21 Danish women employing eye tracking and a GSR techniques. The participants are split into three groups equal in size, each exposed to a different set of emotionally priming stimuli. One group is shown typical/masculine beer advertising and is then compared to the other two, which are respectively exposed to feminism/women’s empowerment and Danish pride/gender neural-based beer advertising. We then conduct a statistical analysis to examine whether the feminism/women’s empowerment and Danish pride/gender neutral-based advertising triggers significantly more positive reactions in terms of valence and arousal than typical/masculine advertising. Eventually, we also test whether emotionally primed participants are significantly more likely to choose beer as a drink out of six drinks of choice. After the experiment, participants are interviewed to better contextualize the findings of the experiment and provide supplementary evidence. We find mixed evidence: both Danish pride/gender neutral and feminism/women’s empowerment-based advertising only partially triggered stronger positive reactions and drive more choice of beer. Additionally, qualitative evidence suggests that Danish women may be more positively impacted by Danish pride/gender neutral-based beer advertising than feminism/women’s empowerment. These results are discussed in light of existing theory but should be interpreted cautiously acknowledging a few limitations. However, the study is not intended to provide conclusive evidence on what the best strategy is in changing Danish women’s perception of beer as a product. Rather, the research aims at demonstrating that changing product perception through emotionally-charged advertising is a more viable and effective way in marketing beer to Danish women than changing the physical connotations of the product itself. As such, the current research attempts to pave the way for future studies to leverage on neuroscientific tools to measure the nonconscious emotional reaction of female consumers to beer advertising to ultimately assess their effectiveness. This will hopefully contribute to help the beer industry get out of a ten-year stagnation period by better targeting women, a segment that so far has been largely ignored or targeted through ineffective and often counterproductive product-based strategies.

EducationsMSc in Brand and Communications Management, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2019
Number of pages235
SupervisorsDaniel Barratt