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Marketers, 80 Percent of Pinterest Users Are Female. Is Your Brand There?

Pinterest, the incredibly popular online bulletin board/scrapbook/inspiration organizer now has more than 11 million unique monthly users. And according to recent numbers from Internet-monitoring firm comScore, it has more than doubled its audience over the past six months.

So, who’s using it? You guessed it. WOMEN. Eighty percent of Pinterest users are female and they are spending more time on there than Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ combined.

The rapid growth can certainly be attributed somewhat to a higher acceptance of social networks now. But keep in mind, there are thousands of new startups in the social arena. What makes Pinterest different? As noted in an article on Mashable, CEO and co-founder of Pinterest, Ben Silbermann said, “the growth has been organic: People would join, become proud of their collections and show it to their friends.” (what women want)

And according to CNN Tech, Silberman said the site will soon roll out new profile pages that have been redesigned to look “more beautiful” and to display users’ influencers more prominently.

Women are flocking to Pinterest and the infographic below reveals just how powerful it is, but more importantly, the opportunities it offers brands. 

80% Pinterest Users are Women

Stephanie Holland is President and Executive Creative Director for 
Holland + Holland Advertising,Birmingham, AL. Working in an industry that is dominated by men, she is one of only 3% of the female creative directors in the country. Stephanie works mostly with male advertisers, helping them successfully market to women. Subscribe to She-conomy by Email
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When Marketing to Women, Don’t Be A Man: Ask For Directions

To know that brands must target women is great. But can you still mess up? Absolutely.

Dawn Billings, founder of The Heart Link Women’s Network, polled women small business professionals from three countries to find mistakes made by businesses when marketing to women. We have actually discussed most all of these at one time or another, but the survey further validates and substantiates that simply knowing women are your market could be more dangerous if you don’t take the extra steps to understand them.

“Women work very hard. They wear many hats. Often they are so busy being responsible and reliable they forget to have fun. Anything that you can offer women to help them add fun back into their lives can be a very valuable offering.” – Dawn Billings

According to the results of the survey, below are six mistakes businesses need to avoid when marketing to women:

  1. Do not fail to market directly to women.
  2. Do not think women think the same as men.
  3. Do not attempt to pigeon-hole women by age.
  4. Do not underestimate the power of the more mature boomer woman.
  5. Do not ignore the time women spend online connecting with, and influencing their networks.
  6. Do not forget the FUN.

So, let’s talk about them a little further.

1. Do not fail to market directly to women.

“Women feel they are their own market.” – Dawn Billings

Women want you to speak to them directly. But don’t forget. You must take the time to understand them. Otherwise, you run the risk of approaching them with stereotypical messages that could do more harm than good. Dell Computers found this out the hard way with the launch of “Della” a website targeting the “not quite as bright as the male” female.  Or at least that is how it was interpreted. The site, months in the making, was taken down after just three days due to the backlash.

2. Remember that women think differently than men.

For one thing, it’s scientific. We talk about it more here, but essentially women’s frontal lobe, the area in the brain responsible for problem-solving and decision-making, is larger. This results in them to putting more time and effort into a decision or problem solving process. (aka, taking a long time) Another example is found in their “larger” limbic cortex, the area which is responsible for regulating emotion. Women have more connections to the emotional centers of their brain. (aka, leading with their emotions)

Understanding the differences in men and women, opens up for better communication and messaging and ultimately sales. Refusing to see the differences leads to offensive or even worse messages that do not resonate at all with the female prospect.

3. Do not attempt to pigeon-hole women by age.

Demographics are dead. We can no longer look at them as by age but instead must consider their lifestage. The female is different than she was 10 years ago, they are different from each other and they change pending where they are in life.

A 40-year old female might have a toddler at home, a child in college or may have never married or had children at all. What connects with the situation of the one with a toddler has little chance of speaking adequately with the needs of the other two.

4. Do not underestimate the power of the more mature boomer woman.

Female boomers feel they have been dropped completely off the marketer’s or brand’s radar. They were vigorously pursued for so long, and yet at 55, they feel abandoned.  Or worse, they feel targeted solely for retirement homes and adult diapers.

The reality is, they have more money than anyone, they control the spending and they have a LOT of living left to do.

As Billings points out, research shows:

  • Every fifth adult in the U.S. today is a female over 50.
  • The 50+ population will grow by 70 percent over the next 15 years.
  • Women comprise the majority of the 80 million Boomers now working their way through society and the consumer marketplace. They have established careers and money to spend on themselves, their families and their causes, as well as the ability to influence the majority of their households’ purchasing decisions.
  • Disposable incomes are highest among women aged 45-54.
  • In the next decade, women will control two-thirds of the consumer wealth in the U.S.
  • The fastest growing demographic segment on Facebook is women over 55, growing 175 percent in the past six months.
  • Not only will Boomer women continue to earn income by working, they’ll also manage inheritance windfalls from their parents as well as their husbands, who they will outlive by 6-9 years on average. (Sad, but true.)
  • The 6.7 million companies owned by women account for 30 percent of all privately-owned U.S. small business, skewing heavily towards women 35-5

5. Do not ignore the time women spend online connecting with, and influencing their networks.

Women rule the Internet. Comscore says women are the majority of users of social networking sites and spend 30% more time on these sites than men. On Facebook alone:

  1. Women are not only the majority of its users, but drive 62% of activity in terms of messages, updates and comments, and 71% of the daily fan activity.
  2. Women have 8% more Facebook friends on average than men, and spend more time on the site.
  3. Women played a key role in the early days by adopting three core activities—posting to walls, adding photos and joining groups—at a much higher rate than males.

Women are searching what they want and need on the Internet and they are now finding affirmation or reasons not to buy within their networks. That is where you can find her, get to know her and let her get to know you.

6. Do not forget the FUN.

And before she can have fun, she has to find time. According to Women Want More, by Michael Silverstein and Kate Sayre,

“Above all, women want “agents of leverage” – ways to find time, save time, free up time. And when women find a product or service that truly meets those needs, they can become brand apostles.”

But beware, don’t tell her she “deserves it.” According to Marti Barletta, author of “Marketing to Women” and CEO of TrendSight Group, “The optimistic message [from marketers], all the ‘You deserve it’ stuff, is completely wrong right now. What is right is saying, ‘You’re smart. You can handle this. You can make the right decisions, and here’s how we can help.’” (via Advertising Age)

So, when marketing to women, don’t be a man. Ask for directions.

Longer Experience With Social Media Turns Into More Time Spent And The Result Is, Well… RESULTS.

Social Media Marketing Industry Report 2011 from Michael A. Stelzner on Vimeo.

The newly released 2011 Social Media Marketing Industry Report is a must read. Michael Stelzner, of Social Media Examiner, has been providing this resource for three years now. But I feel this year’s report yields the most telling results because we now have history, indexes and baselines with social media and levels of participation.

What I found most interesting is that the data reveals what early adopters have been saying all along. Social media marketing is effective and productive, but it takes time to nurture and mature. It is not a get rich scheme. Social media marketing works best for those committed to their companies and customers for the long term.

The report shows that companies with more years of social media experience spend more time each week conducting social media activities. Why? Because they have witnessed the direct correlation to time spent and results generated. They know it works and are willing to devote more and more time and resources to it.

Companies using social media 3+ years, spend the most time each week conducting social media activities. – 63% spend more than 10 hours per week. Only 41% of those with 1–3 years of experience spend that much time. For those just getting started it is dramatically less.

So, back to those with 3+ years of experience with social media:

  • 91% reported an increase in traffic
  • 72% report it has helped them close business
  • 72% report it has increased exposure for their business
  • More than 80% gained more business partnerships
  • More than 65% agree that overall marketing costs dropped when social media marketing was implemented.
  • More than 85% experienced an increase in search rankings

It might be helpful to compare what the companies with 3+ years of social media experience are saying and how that compares to those just getting started. Which category do you fall into?

Tools that companies with 3+ Years Experience use:

  • 97% use Facebook
  • 96% use Twitter
  • 86% use blogs
  • 84% use LinkedIn
  • 75% use YouTube or other video

Tools that companies Just Getting Started use:

  • 84% use Facebook
  • 64% use Twitter
  • 62% use blogs
  • 53% use LinkedIn
  • 26% use YouTube or other video

Tools that companies with 3+ Years Experience plan to learn more about:

  • 59% Social bookmarking/news sites
  • 56% Facebook
  • 56% Geo-location
  • 53% Blogs
  • 48% YouTube or other video
  • 45% Twitter
  • 44% LinkedIn
  • 32% Forums
  • 32% Groupon
  • 9% MySpace

Tools that companies Just Getting Started want to know more about:

  • 83% Facebook
  • 80% Blogs
  • 72% Twitter
  • 68% LinkedIn
  • 60% YouTube or other video
  • 58% Social bookmarking sites
  • 51% Forums
  • 42% Geo-location
  • 29% Groupon
  • 17% MySpace

People are on the Internet. They spend vasts amount of time there. Especially women. But the good news is the data reveals that for those marketers willing to spend the time and resources to reach them effectively, THE PAY OFF IS WORTH IT.

Other key findings include:

  • 90% of marketers said that social media was important to their business
  • The number one benefit of social media marketing is standing out in an increasingly noisy world.
  • 75% of marketers indicate they will increase blogging.
  • Design and development, content creation and analytics are the top three areas that social media marketers are outsourcing.
  • Marketers are more likely to decrease their use of direct mail than any other marketing channel.
  • A significant 55% of marketers either have no plans to use or will decrease their use of print ads.
  • 8% of marketers plan on increasing radio, with 68% of marketers having no plans to use radio at all.
  • 6% of marketers plan on increasing their use of TV with 76% having no plans of using TV at all.

You can download the full 2011 Social Media Marketing Industry Report report here.


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Stephanie Holland is President and Executive Creative Director for Holland + Holland Advertising, Birmingham, Alabama. Working in an industry that is dominated by men, she is one of only 3% of the female creative directors in the country. Stephanie works mostly with male advertisers, helping them successfully market to women. Subscribe to She-conomy by Email

Marketers: Are You Ignoring The Once, Highly Sought After, Female Baby Boomer?

According to eMarketer, boomers, whose median age is 55, spend more time and money online than any other demographic. Yet, this market is essentially neglected by most advertisers and marketers.

It is estimated that 78.2% of this cohort, or nearly 60 million adults, is online. Even as their numbers decline, that penetration rate will remain high through 2015. And they control more than $2 trillion in annual spending.

“The baby boomers grew up being chased by marketers and advertisers that tailored products and brands to appeal to them,” said Lisa E. Phillips, eMarketer senior analyst “Now the median age of this cohort is 55, and many boomers feel as if they have dropped off many marketers’ radar.”

This is not new, news to Marti Barletta.

She has been shouting the neglect of the baby boomer market for quite a while.  Actually, she talks specifically about the “lifestage” they happen to be moving through and she zeros in on the segment of boomers who not only have the money, but control the spending. She calls them “PrimeTime Women” and authored a book titled the same.

Barletta emphatically states that women currently in their “PrimeTime” are the healthiest, wealthiest and most active, educated and influential generation of women in history.

I purchased PrimeTime Women a couple of years ago at the Marketing to Women Conference in Chicago and still refer to it all the time.  Realizing that the female boomer is your market is of no value – unless you are saying what she wants to hear.

Below are just a few nuggets from PrimeTime Women to help you better understand who she is:

  • She is happier and more content and possesses a brighter, more optimistic disposition than Generation X and Generation Y women.
  • She has a newfound sense of freedom to be herself.
  • She is not just active, she’s a bit of an activist.
  • She will go out of her way to buy from companies who are environmentally conscious.
  • She knows how to handle unexpected turbulence and how to get around obstacles in ways that younger women have yet to figure out.
  • She feels her greatest achievements lie ahead of her.
  • In most instances, using conventional celebrity advertising to reach PrimeTime Women won’t work. Consumers in PrimeTime have less of a need to aspire up and impress others and are no longer as driven by materialistic values such as fame and fortune. That is not to say that all celebrity usage is ineffective, but there is a different dynamic. Instead, they are drawn to people they already do like those who are approachable.
  • PrimeTime women have many things that they care about more than when they were younger. For example:
  1. Family and personal legacy
  2. Time to finally do something for themselves without feeling guilty
  3. Milestones are key triggers in the decision making process
  4. Experiencing life to the fullest

If you recognize the female boomer as a viable market and want to connect with her effectively, I highly suggest you purchase your own copy of PrimeTime Women.

If you’re still not convinced, I suggest you RUN get a copy.


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Stephanie Holland is President and Executive Creative Director for Holland + Holland Advertising, Birmingham, Alabama. Working in an industry that is dominated by men, she is one of only 3% of the female creative directors in the country. Stephanie works mostly with male advertisers, helping them successfully market to women. Subscribe to She-conomy by Email

Guys, Be Wary Of Blaming Your Declining Sales Solely On The Recession.

Nearly a year ago, I was chatting with the owner of a retail flooring store. He shared that one of the national flooring industry associations had conducted research which revealed “women were their market.” He went on to say that the findings suggested flooring retailers need to better understand and cater to the female audience.

I thought to myself, “This guy gets it.”

I questioned how he planned to appeal to women. “Simple,” he answered. He would require all of his salesmen (yes, his sales staff is all male) to wear a shirt and tie – preferably a suit.

Why, you ask? So did I. And the answer? “To show who’s in charge.” (His wife feels like a man is in control when he is dressed in a suit.)

Ummmm….. what!?!

Fast forward to now and sales have continued to drop. Probably the economy, right? Possibly. But I am guessing there is an even better chance that the female audience is inadvertently telling him who is in charge.

Guys, be careful not to blame all of your poor sales on the economy. If your competitor is thinking like this store owner, you have an opportunity to steal market share now more than ever. But, if your competitor not only realizes he must target the female, but decides to understand her as well – watch out. You could find yourself all dressed up with no where to go.


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Stephanie Holland is President and Executive Creative Director for Holland + Holland Advertising, Birmingham, Alabama. Working in an industry that is dominated by men, she is one of only 3% of the female creative directors in the country. Stephanie works mostly with male advertisers, helping them successfully market to women. Subscribe to She-conomy by Email

Top 25 Consumer Brands Women Are Talking About – September 2010 Results

When I was comparing September’s “Women at NBCU’s Brand Power Index” with last month’s scores, it felt a bit like watching the BCS countdown last night. Even though I was trying to figure out which teams must win or lose so that my team can go on to win the National Championship, I know things will most likely change dramatically by next week. There’s a reason for that. Some teams will do things right this next week – and some teams won’t.

The difference in college football is that there can only be one real winner at the end of the season. For consumer brands, many more can win by listening and responding to what women want.

“It is amazing to see how quickly a brand’s energy can be elevated by marketing and promotional strategies – even in just a month,” said Tony Cardinale, SVP of Strategic Research Insights for NBC Universal Women and Lifestyle Entertainment Networks.

Among the Top 25 Brands in September (of the 500 analyzed):

  • 4 stayed the same at the same position
  • 7 moved up
  • 8 moved down
  • 6 were new to the list
  • 6 dropped below the Top 25

Also, according to Cardinale, “social media campaigns continue to spark a lot of dialogue and move the needle, and television remains a powerful influence.” For example, this month “One a Day” by Bayer moved up 241 spots from #381 to #140 as a result of their “whatmatterstoyou.com” social campaign.

And auto companies, that leveraged the power of social media to introduce new car models, also performed well this month. Chrysler, who unveiled several new 2011 models via Facebook, was up 38 spots from 132 to 94. Also, Ford and Honda, who have also used Facebook in this way, ranked high (#5 and #9 respectively).

For the month of September, the following consumer brands made the top 25. ( ) shows as compared to August

1.     Wal-Mart (same)
2.     Target (same)
3.     eBay (up 1)
4.     Verizon (down 1)
5.     Ford (up 3)
6.     Coca-Cola  (same)
7.     iPhone (up 15)
8.     AT&T  (down 3)
9.     Honda (new to top 25)
10.   Pepsi (same)
11.    iPod  (new to top 25)
12.   Amazon.com (down 3)
13.   Toyota (up 5)
14.   Sears (up 5)
15.   Similac (new to top 25)
16.   Bank of America (down 9)
17.   Microsoft  (up 6)
18.   Netflix  (up 2)
19.   Tylenol (new to top 25)
20.  McDonald’s (down 9)
21.   Sprint (down 9)
22.  Kohl’s (down 1)
23.  Chevrolet (new to top 25)
24.  Samsung (new to top 25)
25.  Comcast (down 9)


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Stephanie Holland is President and Executive Creative Director for Holland + Holland Advertising, Birmingham, Alabama. Working in an industry that is dominated by men, she is one of only 3% of the female creative directors in the country. Stephanie works mostly with male advertisers, helping them successfully market to women. Subscribe to She-conomy by Email

When Marketing to Women, Remember: Moms Are Not JUST Moms

We talk a good bit about how all women are not moms. But it would also be wise for marketers to remember that moms are not just moms. They have other interests, and that is true for mom bloggers as well as mom blog readers.

Yes, moms who blog are very influential and according to eMarketer, that trend is expected to steadily increase from 3.9 million today to 4.4 million in 2014. And yes, moms who blog have become important partners for many companies selling their products and services to the nearly 33 million moms who go online in the US.

But marketers should not assume that moms who blog only share motherhood issues, nor that the mom readers only want to read about motherhood topics.

Moms share a diversity of interests including travel, automobiles and personal technology.

Further, according to Debra Williamson, eMarketer senior analyst and author of the new report “Moms Who Blog: A Marketing Powerhouse,” moms are not interested only in being flooded with coupons and giveaways.

“Marketing via moms who blog requires regular participation,” said Williamson. “Successful marketers create real relationships with blogging moms and work hard to make it easy for moms to support their marketing initiatives. This means understanding that moms have different points of view and don’t always focus on the same topics.

Such outreach programs can reach millions of moms as the trends for mom readers continue to increase as well. Viewing moms for more than being a mom can add to your bottomline.


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Stephanie Holland is President and Executive Creative Director for Holland + Holland Advertising, Birmingham, Alabama. Working in an industry that is dominated by men, she is one of only 3% of the female creative directors in the country. Stephanie works mostly with male advertisers, helping them successfully market to women. Subscribe to She-conomy by Email