Animal-Companion Depictions in Women's Magazine Advertising

Via a content analysis of 1398 advertisements that include both people and pets and that appeared in women's magazines over a period of four decades, this study examines the changing roles played by companion animals and the changes in themes used in these advertisements. Considering both the pictures and text, the study codes advertisements for themes, pet roles, whether or not the pet appears on a leash, and the physical location of the pet. These data show the movement of companion animals from outdoor protectors and companions to loved family members sharing all areas of the home with their human family. The study provides a method for transforming qualitative data so that they can be rigorously tested using a quantitative approach. The findings support prior survey research and provide direction for positioning and marketing-communications strategies to allow for societal trends that influence consumers' self-identities.

Publication Information
Article Title: Animal-Companion Depictions in Women's Magazine Advertising
Journal: Journal of Business Research (2008)
v. 61 pp. 424-430
Author(s): McGarvey, Mary G;  Kennedy, Patricia
Researcher Information
McGarvey, Mary G
McGarvey, Mary G
Associate Professor of Economics
  • Applied Econometrics
  • Public Policy Analysis
  • Economics of Obesity
  • Labor Markets
CoB 525 P
P.O. Box 880489
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Lincoln, NE 68588-0489, USA
Phone: (402) 472-9415
Kennedy, Patricia
Kennedy, Patricia
  • Sports Marketing
  • Marketing Communication
CoB 345
P.O. Box 880492
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Lincoln, NE 68588-0492, USA
Phone: (402) 472-2316
Fax: (402) 472-9777