It is well known that technology is a male-dominated industry. Just take a look at a couple of statistics noted by Ryan Holmes, creator of Hootsuite, in an article titled, “Why the Tech Industry is (Still) Failing Women:”
- Only eight percent of startup founders are women, according to EZebis, a site that supports women in tech.
- Women comprise fewer than 30 percent of U.S. computer science and engineering programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels, according to the National Science Foundation.
YET, WHO ACTUALLY PURCHASES TECH PRODUCTS? Let’s take a look at a few more numbers.
- Women in Western countries use the internet 17% more every month than their male counterparts according to Intel, Genevieve Bell, 2012
- Female gamers over 55 spend more time online gaming than males ages 15 to 24. (Source: Ford Motor Company and Trendwatching.com study, 2013)
- A 2012 study from the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) revealed that women’s interest in technology has increased in the last five years, with eight in 10 women now expressing an interest in consumer electronics (CE) products and further, women also exert a significant amount of influence on CE purchases with six out of 10 women initiating or being involved in CE product purchase decisions.
SO, WHAT DO WE DO DIFFERENT TO EFFECTIVELY CONNECT WITH THE FEMALE?
The article includes several examples of the blunders and what not to do when selling tech to women like the disastrous Della.com site for women that was taken down within days of initial launch.
But it also offers a few tips on how to do it right.
LESSON #1: Design for Your Most Demanding Customers (Hint: Women)
Anna Shaw of Smart Design points out that women are “your most demanding customers.” Fulfilling their wants and needs heightens the chances of appealing to everyone.
LESSON #2: Stop Viewing “Women” as a Single Market
One of the biggest mistakes is assuming all women are moms which is exactly what Whirlpool did at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show by showcasing their Internet-connected kitchen, dining room and laundry room products naming it the, “Mommy Tech Summit.” Seriously, guys?
LESSON #3: Solve Problems With Uniquely Female Products
Great example of this is where Koss Stereo-phones listened to women’s complaints about typical earbuds that are painful and of poor quality because they did not fit properly. Hence Koss-Fit, a new line of earbuds that are 30% smaller to fit comfortably inside women’s ears. Sign me up!
LESSON #4: Put Women in Charge of the Design Process
As I pointed out in the article, it’s one thing to get input from women by asking wives and assistants, but to truly avoid the pitfalls of creating a product for and marketing it to women, companies need to put women in charge of the process. This is exactly what Micael Koss, CEO of Koss, did by turning all design decisions for the Fit earbuds over to women. He went on to say he felt it produced a more authentic product that his customers appreciate.
While the printed version contains more detail, you can see the online version here.
Filed under: Buying Power of Women, Connecting with Women, Marketing 2.0, Marketing to "Green" Women, Marketing to Boomer Women, Marketing to Single Women, Marketing to Women, Social Media, Targeting Women, Women and social media, Women and the Internet