Micropolitan: reminds me of Metropolis, that famous city from the Dick and Jane era Superman comics. But, this name wasn't invented by a writer selling fantasy, it was coined by the U.S. Census to describe "a locale with at least one town of 10,000 to 49,999 people."
At Reveries.com, word is that more than 28 million Americans live in a micropolis. Reveries gleaned their information from the Wall Street Journal which goes on to describe a micropolis as "much more diffuse" than the suburbs, "with an expansive border and a typically small core." Hmmm...sounds like a women's group to me. According to this definition, women's networking groups qualify as micropolis's, and, in fact, the online communities we build fit the bill perfectly.
According to the Reveries article, these small communities (how 40-50,000 people got to be 'small' I'm not sure) are attracting marketers such as Wal-Mart and Starbucks, big time. Rightly so. This is beyond targeted marketing. It's in the realm of behavioral marketing--pushing your message out to a specific group of people according to their unique living/shopping/buying habits. Great for offline ads and sales. But, anyone who's anyone, should know that "push" marketing is failing miserably online. Online, folks are sick and tired--that's right--sick and tired--of pop-ups and pop-unders and banner ads and skyscrapers and ads that slither in from the edges of a webpage!!!! Enough already!
There are hundreds, maybe thousands, of micropolis's online. Maybe they aren't in the 40-50,000 member range, but they are certainly in the 5-10,000 member range. I should know...I belong to several. And, while many of them are women's communities online, they are not composed of only women. There are a lot of smart men in these groups. Men who recognize the value of pull-marketing, AKA pull-media, described simply as getting your core market to pull you into their lives. Pull media can be accomplished by joining these women's micropolis's and providing something of value to them. Women can't resist a good story, useful articles, expert advice, open invitations of help, no matter which gender it comes from.
Blogging happens to be an important and growing method of pull media. As noted by Stephen Downes at the Poynter Institute, "it's important to distinguish between push media--where someone else places content in front of you--and pull media--where you select the content to be placed in front of you." He goes on to note that RSS feeds are successful pull media tools, allowing people to "select the feeds they want to subscribe to, and the posts they want to read."
Jane is ready to be pulled into your blog. Do so by visiting more women's blogs and by visiting the links posted there. We don't merely post other women's blog links, we post links that are useful, informative, or interesting, and we don't discriminate on gender. Come to think of it, neither do the men whose blogs include our links. I'm thinking specifically of Michele Miller's post "Make Room for Daddy" from Thursday of last week. A clear case of pull marketing.
Now, what's not to like about that?