Women Want Commitment... From TV Ads?

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women respond to commitment in advertising
Research into how men and women respond to sexual messages.

Historically, researchers have found women to be turned off by racy ads showing excessive nudity and sexual language. New experiments are showing, though, that the problem for advertisers may not be that sex doesn't sell to women, but rather that women don't often agree with the way it's portrayed.

Authors of a new study set to appear in the August issue of The Journal of Consumer Research recently tested their hunch that women's reaction to sexy ads would improve if sexual behavior was linked to two “intrinsic” female values: commitment and devotion.

"Findings from our initial experiments were supportive of this hypothesis," reported the authors in a press release. "Experiment one illustrated that commitment-related cues in the ad itself (for example, positioning the product as a gift to a woman from a man) boosted women's attitudes."

The study builds on existing perspectives in sexual psychology, said the authors in a press release, that portray men as having positive attitudes toward recreational and casual sex and women valuing the emotional intimacy and commitment surrounding the act. Hmm. In which decade were these findings released?

Note to advertisers: Those Diet Coke ads drew some pretty wide smiles from us. How about some more of those?

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