What’s so bad about the ‘F’ word?

I’ve had a few interesting offline conversations with colleagues about my recent post “How well do you know your audience?“. Apparently the referencing of two “women” sites in the opening paragraph set up my post as a “feminist rant”. I may be naive but how does a review post on marketing psychographics equate to feminism? Isn’t perception such a wonderful thing? The thing is perception and assumptions can be deadly in a campaign and marketing in general.

Activist views aside and back to the business side of things, the reality is that women make over 80% of household purchasing decisions. The interesting thing is a lot of marketing still misses this. Getting the message-market mix right is critical to the success of your campaign; understanding who your audience is and where they source their information is one of the fundamental steps in your research.

The internet has revolutionised the way we (male and female, young and young-at-heart) access, absorb and share information. The article in question was about a recent study that has defined a “market segment” that almost wholly references that fact–we access and share information in a very different way than we did even five years ago.

Women are natural networkers and the internet has given “us” another place to communicate, share and support the sisterhood. Yeah I get that I’m female but as a marketer I believe this is really important to understand the fact women talk about everything. Being female means nothing when I’m doing media channel research and I glean new insights into my target markets every single day!

There are a lot of forums and blogs that have become the online equivalent of “the hairdressers and beauty salon”. Is that bad? Well I don’t know? I’d need to do some more testing and measuring (a solely women market isn’t a primary market I work with). But as a marketer, I think it’s really exciting and I know that if I were play my cards right on these media channels, I could create a tribe of raving fans by word of mouth alone. How much could that be worth to your business?

And I guess my other point/question is when did feminism become such a dirty word? Why are people so threatened by it? Why is it that when there are the words “woman” and “women” in the citation, it automatically becomes a feminist issue or rant? Lord forbid they are actually good reference sites.

What do you think? I’d love to hear you thoughts in the comments below!

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