Social media has made itself felt in all areas of marketing today. You cannot escape Facebook, Twitter, blogs, LinkedIn, or Squidoo. You can ignore them but you cannot escape them. Inherent in using the social web, is understanding your female customer. I still like to say marketing to women online, although my best blog buds are moving away from that term. They have good reason and I respect them for it, but in my opinion, there is no reality in ignoring marketing to women online.
Women have always been the social planners - whether that was Mom preparing the kids (and Dad) for church on Sunday morning, and remembering if it was their turn to "bring the donuts" for the after mass social hour; or sis remembering everyone's birthday, including who should and shouldn't be invited; women have been the ones in charge of getting it done. We can go all the way back to the days of meeting at the well, if you like. Women have not changed all that much - we like company, we like parties, we like getting to know you.
What we aren't are number crunchers (unless we choose to be so in our careers). We wish you would understand that when you play by the numbers, you diminish us. Numbers don't tell you very much. In the world of advertising and marketing, numbers have played far too big a role, for far too long. It isn't how many people you get to your store opening - it's how well they're treated when they get there, and whether or not they will ever come back. It's whether or not you, as the store owner, bothered to start a relationship.
That's it - the touchy, feely word all the maketing experts are writing about, the word that invaded our sales cycles back before social media was so pervasive - the "relationship"... as in CRM, customer-relationship management. CRM is a woman's whole world. We LIVE for CRM - without the numbers. And, now that we have Facebook, blogs, Twitter and the like, we are commanding R of it.
The "R" of it is the relationship! Something you absolutely need to accomplish your goals. The "R" of reaching out to the women's market. Yes, the women's market...not your "female customer," not "the people," not your "target market" ... the women's market. All those women who make up the ever-powerful Mommy bloggers (oh, just ask P&G how much power the Mommy bloggers have); the women over 40 - single and loving it, and Savvy Aunties; plus the boomer women who are doting on their grandchildren - these are the women's market.
And, if you're too busy counting eyeballs, or clicks, or link equity - instead of building relationships with these women, you're so NOT going to be around for long. Because if you can't be bothered to treat these women as if they are living, breathing beings, with likes and dislikes, good days and bad days, preferences that they make widely known via their inner circles and growing social networks...you'll discover in short order that...she's so not into you. [note: I was typing so fast when I wrote this post I left out the NOT in sentence one of this paragraph; now you all knew it was there, right? but, I wanted to clarify so...I added it properly.]
And no, it doesn't matter how big you are. We can bring down the big brands as easily as the small ones. The key is to forget the numbers - they don't mean what you think they mean. Get on board with social media skills and relationships - we are so not into being a demographic.