Wednesday, August 14th, 2013
Social media is an ever evolving medium.
There are new platforms and new opportunities arriving virtually every day.
The trick is knowing how to use social media wisely.
Especially when you want to talk to women.
Females account for a full 85 percent of purchase, yet 91 percent of these women claim that marketers don’t understand them.
With trillions of dollars to spend over the next few years, female consumers are a power player in the market.
You just need to figure out how to reach them.
Here’s a clue – women are social creatures.
Social media is your answer.
1. Include “Share” Buttons
Everything you create should have as many share buttons and options as possible. About 92 percent of women pass on information. This is according to Mindshare’s research on female consumers and social media users.
2. Make Exclusive Groups
The more exclusive you can make your social media groups or accounts seem, the more success you’ll have. 76 percent of women want to be part of a panel or select group, and adding a special name or invitation process makes this simple to do.
3. Focus on Facebook
Women are the biggest demographic on Facebook. That means if you’re not on Facebook, you’re missing out on significant opportunities to connect with your target market and demographic. If you have limited resources and can only focus on one thing, make it Facebook. It will have much more bang for the buck.
If you’re running a Twitter feed – and you should be – be sure that you’re addressing the various tweets form time to time. If someone makes a comment, comment back and acknowledge tweets, both positive and negative.
5. “Friend” Clients
Women enjoy purchasing based on perceived relationships. As often as possible. Make it a point to add customers, especially women, to your friends list or make them special fans or followers, which is similar to friendship in social media.
6. Interact on Forums as a Member
If you run a forum as part of your product offering or website, be active on that forum. For the best results, you need to be a member of the forum and offer legitimate information, news and tips for users. This encourages a relationship, and relationships encourage purchases.
7. Build Identity with Humor
Timely, appropriate humor is a nice way to connect with the female demographic, especially if your humor seems to commiserate with emotions women experience frequently. Clever ads promoted over Youtube are especially effective as they can become true branding over time.
8. Warm Hearts with True Stories
Women respond to emotion, and they often respond to moving or emotional stories. It’s important that the stories be true, however, and not exploitive as this can often turn off buyers as well. Heartwarming stories are often very effective.
9. Empathize in Your Ads on Social Media
When creating advertisements for social media – Facebook ads, Youtube mini commercials or the like – be sure to try and create a sense of empathy with the viewers. Show the customers that you feel the same things you feel and you’ll find far greater success than you would through logic.
10. Use Polls to Identify Demographics
Many social media accounts incorporate polls, and these polls can be especially effective to create focus groups and gather demographic information. Set up a poll and soon you’ll know just what color to use with those new handbag or leather interior.
11. Use Tweets and Vine for Young Women
It’s important to separate ages within the demographic. Young women under the age of twenty-five can be found on Vine and Twitter even more so than Facebook. Be sure to spend some time creating marketing elements there if you’re trying to reach a young market.
12. Encourage Responses from Readers
Don’t just talk, preach or advertise to your readers. Encourage conversations with comments, responses, reviews, hashtags and sharing features.
13. Always Use a Casual Voice
Women don’t like to be preached to. They appreciate a casual, conversational voice when they are doing research on new purchases or reading advertisements and blog posts.
14. Use Humor for Young Consumers
Very young women including teenager are much more likely to respond to very casual posts. These women enjoy humor – often sarcastic and even bawdy – in advertisements. They are more than 83 percent more likely to respond to those posts than less humorous ones
15. Highlight Deals for Older Consumers
On the other hand, older female consumers, especially those with a family, are interested in the deals that you can provide. Advertise to these women by focusing on savings and specials. Honest, simple promotions are more effective than humor or sarcasm.
16. Tweet in the early evening
Young women more active in early evening according to reports by Social Media today. As these women finish with school or work, they settle in to check their social media accounts and can spend hours visiting different sites, tweeting, following, sharing and enjoying their communities.
17. Post specials before early morning
Adult women, especially those with careers and families often check social media in the morning, lunch and late evening. Post daily specials first thing in the morning for these users and perhaps new specials as the evening approaches.
18. Elicit Real-time Feedback – But Not on Twitter
There is a lot to be said for real time feedback. Ask for reviews and comments. Ask customers to share true stories and experiences. But don’t ask them to tweet about it. Twitter can’t be monitored as well as Facebook, and stories can often get out of hand.
19. Offer Spontaneous Deals
Social media happens in real time, so your specials should, too. Offer specials that only last for an hour or two at a time. Find chances to motivate women with excellent deals the simply can’t find any other time or location.
20. Activate the Female Blogger Network
The Mommy Blogger network is huge, and there are countless followers who read and interact with the female blogging communities. Send out some samples for review and see what sort of response you can get there – it may be much bigger than you’d expect, especially if the bloggers really like what you’re selling.
21. Never Pigeon-Hole Women
You’ll ostracize women in an instant if you try to stereotype or pigeonhole them. The tastes and preferences of women are as vast as the women themselves. Present plenty of opportunities and categories to appeal to virtually all women out there.
22. Watch Your Spelling
The majority of grammar freaks are women. They notice spelling mistakes more frequently and will have decisions influenced by the quality of your posts as well. So check your spelling and punctuation.
23. Utilize Images in Post
Women like to see what they are getting, so use images and plenty of them. The images will not only catch the eye, but they offer an excellent means to Pinterest, one of the other female-dominated social media platforms.
24. Encourage Report Features
Many social media platforms include various reporting features. Using the report features allows you to see who your readers and users are and then align your advertisements with user preferences and demographics.
25. Consider an App
The tablets and handheld devices are huge, and the mobile market is growing tremendously. Consider creating and app for your website. It’s important to have a mobile website, but an app will also simplify things for consumers and women like simplicity.
26. Sponsor Other Apps
If you can’t create your own app right now, consider sponsoring another application that is heavily used by females. Of course you’ll want to make the app you’re sponsoring in line with your own website and business demographics.
27. Respect the Hide Button
It’s always important to remember that on Facebook nobody has to read your ads. There is a button to Hide Ads that be utilized if your ads are too annoying or not helpful at all. Be sure that your ads are useful, timely and quality – humor or changing specials work well.
28. Build a Brand Based on Emotion
Rather than a brand based on strict logic, brands that sell to women primarily should be based on emotion. The brand should make women feel something positive, and this will make the purchasing experience more successful.
29. Create a Series of Posts
Rather than just a single post, start a series of posts that regular readers will come back and check on. You can do a series of interviews, a series of reviews, a series of transformations or even a video series of any of the above. Bring in readers at the start of the series and let it continue on over time to boost viewers and return visits.
30. Be Useful or Inspirational in Your Posts
If your posts and tweets can be useful or meaningful, more women will subscribe to them. Consider daily special offers, inspirational messages, a joke or meme of the day or something similar that people might even look forward to seeing.
31. Use Facebook as a Focus Group
H&M, a youth-focused clothing retailer, has finessed the art of using Facebook as a focus group. The retailer posts suggestions and options for future items and members of its Facebook community comment and make suggestions. This not only gives H&M buyer insight, it makes buyers more committed to purchasing items later.
32. Answer the Question!
If someone posts a question in any of your various social media channels, be sure to monitor the channels daily and answer the question. Nothing is worse for showing viewers your care than languishing questions in cyberspace without a response.
33. Make Promotions Simple
Contests and promotions should be simple. Don’t make women click through more than one website and try to avoid complicated song and dance routines online to be part of a promotion, sale or contest.
34. Only Post Once
While some accounts can handle multiple posts per day, you don’t want to overwhelm your followers. Make a point of posting once per day. You might post twice, but once is usually enough.
35. Make Your Message Clear
Don’t confuse your female followers in Social Media by listing confusing dates and times or forgetting to include some important criteria for purchasing or using a special. Keep your message simple and clear. Save long posts for blogs, not Facebook posts or forum posts.
36. Integrate Shopping Technology with Social Media
Rather than having would-be buyers leave social media sites like Pinterest and Facebook, work on integrating the buying technology for your website with the social media site. A quick pop-up box allows buyers to purchase and then keep right on scrolling or reading.
37. Update Frequently
Once you have a social media account, you should absolutely be updating it frequently. Shoot for once per day with a minimum of a few times per week. This can be scheduled into your day or outsource it to a social media manager, but get it done, otherwise social media is a wasted effort.
38. Embrace Transparency
Understand that with social media, you are going to need to be much more transparent in your communications and products. Questions, comments, reviews and responses will all increase transparency, which customers love. Even if you hate it, learn to embrace it.
39. Use Your Accounts for Timely Messages
Show your empathy for community by posting non-sales related posts and tweets about timely issues and current events. Just be careful that you don’t go up on a political soapbox or make a public relations nightmare for yourself.
40. Make All Products Attractive
Since Pinterest allows users to pin any image you have on your site to their boards, you want to be sure to use only the most attractive pictures you can. With any luck, the pretty pictures will go viral and you’ll have more people interested in the attractive things you offer or sell.
41. Create a Thematic Pinterest Page
Go one step further and create your own Pinterest page. Post your own items on the Pinterest page, of course, but then you can also post tips for fashion, home improvement, shopping, savings, crafts and virtually any creative elements you can think of.
42. Use Hashtags as Frequently as Possible
Anytime you post to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Vine, or any other social media site, always use hashtags to bring your social media experiences together. Using hashags not only will link the accounts and comments, but make it easier for searchers to find you as well.
When the majority of chief household shoppers are women, you absolutely must target them.
Social media has revolutionized the way women interact and shop – it’s the perfect place to reach your target customers.
Utilizing social media effectively is more than throwing up a profile, however.
You’ll need to invest time and effort in a full marketing effort.
But you’ll certainly see the results you want!