Kirsty Cooke

Kirsty Cooke

What do women want? To laugh, says Kantar

Following our recent partnership on HERlarious, here at Kantar, the marketing insights and consulting company, we are delighted to be working with Funny Women again on a comedy night as part of our #WhatWomenWant? series of events.

The comedy takes place on Wednesday 28th November featuring Rachel Parris, Gráinne Maguire, Cam Spence and Jessica Fostekew, and Funny Women founder Lynne Parker will also host an expert panel that explores the intersection between comedy, media, advertising and self-esteem, specifically as it relates to women. Panelists include Saskia Schuster head of Comedy ITV, Ade Rawcliffe head of diversity for ITV Commissioning and Charlotte Hugh, senior creative at Dark Horses and founder of

The Kantar programme marks 100 years since the first women in the UK were granted the vote, demonstrating that understanding women – who make around 80% of household purchase decisions – really pays.

The exhibition at the centre of the #WhatWomenWant? programme, taking place at Noho Studios, Fitzrovia, is open to the public from 21st to 29th November (closed for school groups on 27th). It will feature examples of advertising, products and marketing campaigns that actually spoke to and empathised with women – that, in the context they were released, empowered and engaged female audiences.

And what is one thing that engages women? Humour. Research from Kantar Millward Brown’s AdReaction study shows that humour is the element that appeals to most people when it comes to advertising.

“Of Gen Z women, 68% value humour over all other characteristics, versus 60% of Gen Z men. Women in other age groups tend to value humour in advertising more than men, but with a less dramatic difference in the numbers. We know that when advertising is designed to elicit an emotional response, it becomes more memorable, and this correlates to sales impact. So, what’s preventing more humour in advertising?” asks Jane Ostler, Global Head of Media, Insights Division at Kantar. Indeed.

As Unilever notes, only 1% of ads show women being funny – but of course we know that there are plenty of humorous women out there who could not only set the example, but write, direct and produce the sorts of campaigns that would actually appeal to the UK women who increasingly report that advertising doesn’t represent them or reflect their real lives.

The #WhatWomenWant? comedy night is more than just a celebration of excellent female stand-up comics. As well as some excellent wine and nibbles, there will also be a chance to glimpse the #WhatWomenWant? exhibition content, and speak to us about our research findings.

Interested?  Sign up here.  See you there!

More information about #WhatWomenWant? Can be found here.


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