Monday, October 27, 2014

Market to a Woman's
Peripheral Vision

Women and men make buying decisions differently.

So say Faith Popcorn and Lys Marigold in their 2001 book "EVEolution - Understanding Women - Eight Essential Truths that Work in Your Business and Your Life."

Women make 80 percent of all buying decisions. Because of political correctness, marketers have been told that it's wrong to treat women and men differently when it comes to analyzing how they make buying decisions. Finally, somebody has the courage to say that it's important to learn how to market to women.

Chapter 4 of "EVEolution" is entitled "Market to her peripheral vision, and she will see you in a whole new light." Popcorn and Marigold believe that exposure is much more important than the things that marketers have traditionally thought were important. Reach and frequency, the authors tell us, are "false idols." The authors say that recency and visibility are important only if you've picked the right way to be visible.

Women aren't attracted to brands that market too aggressively. Popcorn and Marigold say that women and men react differently to advertising because of different levels of dopamine and serotonin in their brains. This also explains why women can enjoy watching a movie, while men need to click dozens of TV channels every few minutes, the authors claim.

Women are more tuned in to what is going on around them. Hence, peripheral marketing can be effective in delivering a sales message to women.

Popcorn and Marigold tell us to market to women by demonstrating, in a low-key way, that our product or service can make their lives better. Don't scream a sales message at women.

The authors list a few of these peripheral ways of presenting your software to women buyers - licensing, co-branding, co-promotion, event marketing, cause marketing, and product placement. Try some of these (and other) non-traditional ways to market to women, and measure the results. Perhaps add the launching of a strong social marketing campaign to your to-do list, and see if Twitter and Facebook can increase sales by appealing to female prospects' peripheral vision.

Based on this chapter, I think the authors might argue that women are likely to be more impressed by the basic attractiveness of a software website - and less impressed by the techie tricks that seem to be popular today (scrolling images, and windows that expand and contract in unusual ways).

As with all marketing campaigns, measure today's financial results, change something, and measure again.

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