7 Essential Steps to Successfully Market to Women


A woman buys very differently to a man. She likes to shop around, consider the whole package, the finer details, the non-essentials, what else is on offer and talk it over with a friend. He likes broader strokes, simplicity and the essentials. She is more we. He is more me. Women buyers have different purchase behaviors to men. Clearly, we also need to tailor different strategies to successfully market to women.

As a business owner or entrepreneur, if you’re not tailoring your marketing to women, you are missing out on a huge opportunity. Here are 7 strategies to help you connect with and convert more of the lucrative female market.

Step # 1 Tailor Your Marketing

A one size fits all marketing strategy no longer works. The power of the purse is growing in strength. Marketing to women doesn’t need to cost more but it does need to speak directly to your female audience.

Research the buying motives of your female buyer and build your marketing message around these.

Step # 2 Evaluate the Opportunity

Women are the market. No longer a niche market, women are the primary consumer. Research confirms they have incredible spending power, accounting for over 85% of all consumer purchases (in the United States).

Review your current gender sales spilt and identify the incremental sales opportunity in your industry from the female buyer.

Step # 3 Less Pastel and Pink

Women are savvy buyers. Accents of pink and some gender specific visuals are not enough to connect with your female buyer. Stellar customer service and insights into how you can support and solve her problems will help build rapport and trust in the relationship.

How well does your brand serve the interests of the female buyer? Think touch points, feel and tone of your online presence and communication.

Step # 4 Ask Her Opinion

Female buyers are demanding customers. But they are also discerning. Marketing to women is about catering to their needs, not just focusing on how they are different to men. The only way to really understand what they are thinking is to ask them.

Survey your female audience and ask them how they perceive your brand, what appeals to them about it and what could be improved upon.

Step # 5 Let her Shop Around

Women like plenty of information and to do their research. They know what they want but it has to ‘feel’ right. What may seem non-essential to you (like color, location of storage pockets, refund policies or testimonials) is what helps her make the bigger picture purchase decision.

Give your female buyer what she wants. That might look like more time to build the ‘know like and trust’ factor or simply listening to her story.

Step # 6 Don’t Make it Linear

A man goes shopping and it looks like a straight line from point A to point B. A woman goes shopping and it can look a bit like a maze, a line zig zagging from point A and finally reaching point B. There’s more to a woman’s purchase decision than ‘what you see is what you get.’

Incorporate relational matters into your marketing. How does her life change with your product or service? How does it impact her relationship, her family or her friends?

Step #7 Empathize Don’t Exclude

Recent studies distinguish men as more exclusive and women as more inclusive. A guy is more likely to ask ‘what’s the score?’ whereas a woman would probably say ‘whose turn is it?’ The female focus is on teamwork, connection and getting personal. Empathy is the driving emotion – someone or something that ‘gets’ her life.

How do you make your female audience feel inclusive and part of your community? Incorporate collective initiatives to bring them together.

Men and women think differently. Why then would we market to them in the same way? Focusing on women does not alienate men. In fact the opposite happens and engagement from men increases. It’s time to seize what marketing guru Tom Peters calls ‘opportunity number one for the foreseeable future.’

The rules of marketing engagement have changed and marketers and entrepreneurs that don’t respond will get left behind. Are you keeping up?

Business Growth Strategist of Helen Roe
Helen Roe is a Business Growth Strategist and Marketing Mentor for business owners who want to lead an extraordinary life. She helps entrepreneurs package their expertise, market it and generate lasting profit.