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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

Sheconomy is Speaking at the 2011 MIMA Summit

I am honored to have been asked to be a featured speaker at the 2011 Annual MIMA Summit. The theme is Celebrating the Digital Decade with a focus on consumer insights. Keynote speakers are Avinash Kaushik, the analytics evangelist for Google and Chris Anderson, editor-in-chief of Wired magazine. A complete line up of speakers can be found here.

I will be presenting on the power of the female consumer in a session titled: Why and How to Effectively Market to Women in Today’s Economic Climate. Are there any topics or questions you feel should be addressed? Also, I would love to know who’s planning to be there!


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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

Is Facebook vs. Google+ Similar to Microsoft vs. Apple?

The radical impact Google is making within the social space has reminded me a bit of the early days with Microsoft vs. Apple. Today it’s Facebook vs Google Plus. Much like Microsoft, Facebook captured the bulk of the market early on and rapidly grew on a worldwide basis. And even though Facebook, much like Microsoft has been somewhat discombobulated, they both fulfilled an untapped need. Microsoft redefined productivity in the business world. Facebook revolutionized the way we communicate with each other. Both achieved what needed to be done on a functional level.

Apple on the other hand offered equal functionality yet with simplicity and clean sleek design. I admit I am biased as I have always been an Apple person, but as I have played around with Google Plus, I am feeling the same differentiating factors. Google+ is simple  and smoother in design. Good friend, Ayesha Mathews-Wadhwa, recently shared a comment referring to the Aspen Ideas Festival:

Design is changing the way we talk to each other.

So true! And I believe Facebook is about to find that out. Facebook is functional and meets a need. But by incorporating thoughtful and logical design, Google+ takes the social experience to a different level.

So who wins? The consumer. I doubt Facebook is going away, but much like Microsoft, they are no longer the only ones playing and will have to step it up. Good competition means choices and ultimately better products for consumers. Google has been trying to get into the social space for quite awhile with little success. But with Google+, I think they have finally created not only something to compete with Facebook (and yes, Twitter,) but something that might even cause a switch.

For example, take a look at Chris Brogan’s (social media extraordinaire) new profile picture on Facebook. I was a bit amused, but I’m guessing Mark Zuckerberg did not feel the same.

What does all of this have to do with marketing to women? Everything. Women want to share, connect and build relationships. And Facebook has met that need. But they also want simple, clean and sleek. And it appears that Google+ has been listening.

As marketers, you need to know social is not a fad or a trend. It is now a way of life and will simply continue to be improved upon – attracting even more women!

Are you prepared to connect with the female market?


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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


What Did Google Learn That Male Marketers Need to Know? It’s Not Just About The Numbers.

Watching the progression of Google’s newest social attempt with Google+  (also referred to as Google Plus), I have noticed a strong similarity with male marketers attempting to get on board with marketing to women.

There are two main stages that both must go through to be successful. Acceptance and understanding.

STEP I: ACCEPTANCE
Google had to first accept that “social” was going to ultimately dictate “search.” The best assessment I have read about this can be found in one of Jay Baer’s recent posts titled: Why Google Has the Hammer to Make Businesses Use Google Plus. It is a must read.

Google has always been about page rankings and algorithms. Hence, they devised their PageRank formula using the number, type, and reputation of other Pages that link to your own as a major ranking factor. This has worked quite well for years and boosted Google to be recognized as the dominant leader of all search engines. But as social moved in, Google resisted change and by the time they recognized social as a necessary component of search (some might say “the” component of search,) they were already way behind.

Meanwhile, both Twitter and Facebook have dramatically encroached Google’s “search” domain with a deeply rooted understanding of “social.”

Male marketers and CEOs continuing to resist the staggering power of the female consumer may too find themselves way behind as fresh, up and coming competitors recognize the vast opportunities that exist in targeting the female market. And with a majority of new businesses being started by women, it’s not difficult to see who might have the edge in this arena.

The reason? Stage two – understanding. Facebook and Twitter understand social and women understand women. Google and men are sometimes much too focused on numbers.

STEP II: UNDERSTANDING
Once male marketers and CEOs accept that women are the market, the real work begins. But some men are not willing to actually get to “know her” and sincerely “understand her” to build relationships and connect effectively. Likewise, although Google saw the writing on the wall with the undeniable impact of “social,” they continued to attempt to control people’s social paths to fit into their algorithms. They could not veer from the numbers long enough to allow users to be authentically social and their several failed social attempts reveal just that.

As Jay Baer put it in the article mentioned earlier, “Google has tried to invent a source of social signals to give it the scoring information it needs to stay on top of the relevancy heap in an ever-expanding Web. Orkut. Google Buzz. To some extent Google Wave. Picasa. None of them got even Twitter-level traction, much less Facebook.

But Google Plus just might be different. After being out only a week, a study conducted by The Next Web reveals that 66% of those who have tried Google+ are ready to abandon Facebook. Why? Because Google decided to listen to what people wanted out of social. Actually, they pretty much copied the good of both Twitter and Facebook, but the point is they now get it. It’s not just about the numbers.

Google finally accepted that “social” is the future of search. But just as important, they finally chose to abandon forced paths for the numbers and are offering a genuine “social” experience. Which ironically, has led to higher numbers – certainly in terms of consumer buy-in. You know they must be doing something right when Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook is the most popular person on Google+.

Questions for male marketers: Have you accepted the power and influence of the female consumer? And more importantly, are you willing to listen to and understand her? My advice would be to not wait. Few can afford the expensive cost of a comeback like Google.


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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

Still Wondering How Your Customer is in Control of Your Marketing? Check Out Google’s New SideWiki.

Last week Google launched SideWiki, which allows people to contribute their thoughts or comments on any webpage. That’s right. ANY webpage on the Internet. Google SideWiki appears as a browser sidebar, where anyone who has subscribed to it for free, can read and write entries along the side of the page.

Women communicate, connect and share. They are going to simply LOVE this. I think Jeremiah Owyang of Altimeter summed it up pretty well on his blog when he said,

“Google is turning the whole web into a social network.”

This means anyone will be able to comment on YOUR website for everyone to see, and there is very little you can do about it – except be prepared. If you have not started participating in the social space, I suggest you get started today. Your customers have beat you to it. And now they own your website. While there have been applications out there before now that allow for this capability, Google is positioned to take it mainstream and rapidly. Some great advice from Owyang:

Develop a social strategy with dedicated resources.
With every webpage now potentially social, you’ll need to develop a process, roles, and policy to ensure you’re monitoring the conversation, participating as you would in blog discussions, and influencing the discussion.  80% of success is developing an internal strategy, providing education before a free-for-all happens with customers and employees.

There are a lot of questions remaining as to how this will all pan out. Who will police the inappropriate comments, what posts will appear on the first page, will competitors actually place their logos on your page? But for now we will seemingly find out in real time as it is up and running on Internet Explorer and FireFox browsers, with Chrome expected out soon.

So, it is no longer a choice as to whether you are going to participate in Social Media Marketing, now the question becomes are you going to respond appropriately and effectively?

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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

Men, Aim Your Advertising Toward Women if You Want to Improve Sales

target1A quick Google search will flood your screen with seminars, new business models, web sites, articles and blogs dedicated to the recently discovered art of marketing to women. The foundation being that 85% of all brand purchases (that’s nearly $2 trillion annually—more than half of the GNP) are made by women. And yet more and more conclusive research is revealing women are not swayed or influenced by the traditional branding messages. In fact, more often than not, women are turned-off by the very brands seeking to target them. The modern woman has become numb and indifferent to ads that speak to her husband, or even worse, her great aunt.

This is not at all surprising considering a measly 3% of advertising creative directors—the people in charge of communicating to purchasers—are women. Even the advertising industry award shows can’t argue the point. Less than 15% of the top honors are awarded to ads targeting women. It’s like some very valuable logic was lost somewhere in the last 50 years.

Change is on the Horizon
It’s been a very slow realization, but it’s finally happening. Established traditional agencies are seeking out the female creatives, new female-focused agencies are cropping up all over the U.S. and Europe, and even the huge, super-star ad agencies are adding entire departments dedicated to tapping into this gold mine of a market.

More Numbers Making News
Research tells us that 71% of women feel that brands only consider them for beauty products and cleaning products. Which is astounding considering additional statistics state the following:

  • 94% the wealth acquired in the next four years, will be acquired by women
  • 69% of household health decisions are made by women
  • 74% of all NBA & NFL apparel is purchased by women
  • 91% of new home decisions are made by women
  • 81% of grocery decisions are made by women
  • 60% of the online population are women
  • 62% of all workers are women
  • 66% of PCs purchases are made by women
  • 92% of vacations destinations are made by women
  • 65% of new car purchases are made by women

Does this Mean Excluding Men?
Absolutely not.
Improving your marketing doesn’t mean making it “for her eyes only.” That would be short-sighted to say the least. In fact, making your product more desirable to women will more than likely make it more appealing to everyone. Quite simply, if you connect with the intelligence and sensibilities of a woman, chances are good you’re message is effective across the sexes. Business owners, both male and female, should consider the fact this information is immensely valuable to every person wanting to thrive or, and in some cases, survive in today’s tenuous market place. Particularly in a fragile economy, advertisers should focus on trying to understand how women think and feel in order to expand their audience.

In other words, if you want your company to shoot for the stars, you may want to aim more in the direction of Venus.

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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