Why advertise to women specifically?
Women are taking on more and more leading roles in the workplace, and in some cases even controlling the majority of household spending. However, they are still largely ignored as a demographic. When advertisers do court women, it is usually with outdated gimmicks like cheesy stock photos or an abundance of pink.
Social media is a particularly effective way to market to women. As Katie Raymond, social media marketing manager for Harman, points out:
“For us as tech brands, we need to not lose sight of the way social media really works- the fact is it benefits women in the way that they communicate. For example: crowd sourcing product reviews- something women are more likely to do, and are more able to do through social media. That means social can provide a space for authentic conversations around brands”
The popular technology site TechRepublic, offers some valuable advice on improving advertising to women, some of which we’ll look at in this article.
Get to know your demographic
Before you launch your strategy, it’s a good idea to review the data available to you. Site usage statistics not only show you the number of female visitors your site is attracting, but also how their activities differ from men. Factors like age, income and marital status could potentially affect a woman’s buying decisions. Look out for information that highlights these features, as they can help better relate content to women.
Listen to your audience
Women are often segmented into certain roles, such as homemaker or mother. Advertisers then market to those roles accordingly, all the while often missing out on consumers who don’t fit those descriptions. An increasing number of women are delaying marriage and focusing on their careers- it is up to advertisers to find ways to appeal to these specific segments.
Coree Silvera, content and social media manager for LiveWorld, suggests utilising a variety of channels to appeal to women. Many marketers go directly to online scrapbook Pinterest to target women, and miss out on many other social media opportunities. It is worth listening and concluding what social spaces women are most active in.
Above all, remember to listen to your target audience’s specific needs. Letting the customer that they’re being heard can do a lot for brand loyalty.
Don’t rely on stereotypes
Making things smaller and splashing them with pink- a practice known as “shrinking and pinking”- seems to be the default tool of marketers when it comes to women. However, as Raymond notes, few women are actually impressed by this:
“Not every woman wants pink and there’s a good number of women who find that a product that is made a little more smaller, daintier, that’s patronizing to them,”
A much more solid way to appeal to women (and clients in general), is basing your marketing on values. Forget focusing on size and colour. Rather determine the specific value set your target audience embraces, and match your marketing accordingly.
Finally, make sure your marketing is empowering and inspirational to women. Portray women as successful and strong, and you can be sure you have a winning campaign.