More Brands Embrace Marketing With Women

Whether it’s Gisele punching mean tweets, mothers and daughters bonding over their curly locks or children showing us how they throw “like a girl,” female empowerment campaigns are one of the biggest trends in advertising today. In fact, this year, the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity is introducing the “Glass Lion,” reserved for creative work that explicitly addresses issues of gender inequality prejudice.

What’s driving the success of these campaigns is fairly obvious: Marketers are beginning to understand what women want to see from brands, whether that be a more realistic depiction of their everyday lives or an uplifting message that speaks to them in a genuine and authentic way. This is a positive trend for our industry, but what is the next phase in the movement?

Recently, I had the pleasure of speaking on this very topic at M2W: The Marketing to Women Conference in Chicago. Not surprisingly, some of the most prevalent themes there were the rise of “femvertising” and how brands can achieve relevancy with today’s female consumer.

Here are a couple of themes that were surfaced at the conference and how marketers can embrace them.

Women have the power, and they know it. Per Fast Company, women spend between $5 trillion and $15 trillion a year on consumer goods in the U.S.

Marketers have been navigating their marketing programs around the importance of women for decades, but do women realize their own influence? The answer is a resounding yes.

Women support brands whose values reflect their own. A brand’s own values — whether that is their guiding mission, how they approach customer service, or their stance on social issues — influence brand loyalty among women. During M2W, we released new research that shows what women want from brands

A majority of women we surveyed (67%) said that it’s very important to them that the brands they support stand for things that they themselves believe in. Another 34% said this was somewhat important to them, and only 4% said that the brand’s values did not matter when it came to their loyalty.

Women want to play a more active role in the marketing process. Female empowerment campaigns are resonating with women because they are dispelling age-old misconceptions that brands are just now beginning to shake. Some of the most common misconceptions that brands have about women, according to women themselves, are that marketers view them as “all the same,” that women want to see images of perfection in ads and that brands don’t value their opinions.

Brands can gain an ever deeper understanding of women by proactively inviting them in to all stages of the marketing process, from insights and innovation projects (like product ideation) to brand storytelling and content creation that place them as protagonists in your story.
The next phase of marketing to women is marketing with women, but it’s on marketers to take an open approach that invites and elevates the opinions, voices and stories of their female customers. Your move, brands.

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