A recent study by Vanessa DiMauro and Dan Blumer shows when businesses who do not focus on millennial women, a higher profitability remains untapped.
Online businesses, you better be focusing on gender instead of age.
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While millennials are interactive with "electronic gadgets and computers earlier than members of any other generation," that's not the complete story.
Entrepreneur's Jesse Torres writes it's less profitable to focus on the millennial age group than narrowing the field to women under 35 with higher social mobility and socially connected via mobile device.
Vanessa DiMauro, CEO of Leader Networks, and Dan Bulmer studied marketing trends through social media. Speaking to Money Talk radio interview on KCAA, DiMauro laid down some pretty basic facts. “Women were two times more likely to turn to social channels to inform their decisions about purchases than men -- at all age groups." And that information is pretty consistent with previous data.
In 2009, Jenna Goudreau noted that women are far more involved "with their family’s finances now and are actively involved in making big-ticket item purchases" while adding "90% of women now deal with financial planners."
Last year, eMarketer.com broke down a DDB Worldwide survey of US web users and the study indicated that 33% of the women would love to shop exclusively online. Women turn to websites for reviews and decision-making. A review doesn’t need to be on a company or retailer page, either. Google, Yelp, and all social media platforms provide spaces for an open discussion.
So why aren't marketers and businesses targeting women more? Men are not the majority buyers of everyday items.
Global communications firm Weber Shandwick admitted women's "social connectivity is far-reaching and their potential exposure to brand messages is high. Marketers do not want to overlook the opportunity to engage with women on social media." If companies knew this two years ago, why not include a focus on women?
In other words, the money, brand loyalty, and desire are there. DiMauro pinpointed the targeted 35 and under women customers "placed a much higher importance on the degree to which a company commits to operating with a social conscience." Women entrepreneurs like Jessica Alba and Olivia Wilde have turned their fan interaction into businesses that provide niche services. And it works.
Marketing expert Adri Miller Heckman agrees that women are more likely to respond to a good company brand and are more than willing to communicate the reasons for loyalty.
“By simply asking the right open ended questions” in a focus group, “women will immediately begin sharing their thoughts and ideas with you as well as each other eventually driving the whole conversation.”
Use the conversation and help being provided to increase brand productivity.
But make no mistake, women consumers will not fall for false advertising. So a company must be effective in promotion towards the potential client or customer. CNN’s Catriona Davis advocates the use of Twitter, but done in a smart, focused way. “With its 140-character gems, your Twitter feed can be inspiring, informative, make you laugh, and even change the way you look at the world.”
Just don’t flood your business account with spam. Instead show what the company values the most.
For instance, if the business is environmental friendly, quote some reliable (and trusted) facts or retweet a connected conversation point. Use something that engages audiences and drives them to the company website to check out promoted products. That means making a site that’s mobile friendly, too, and easy to read on-the-go.
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What Torres’s research illustrates is businesses need to focus on female Generation Yers with disposable income. These women will be loyal to a brand and help promote the products via social media—ultimately creating an organically positive PR spin free-of-charge. As women become more engaged and take control of finances, marketers need to zero in on the growth potential.