You are currently browsing the monthly archive for November 2009.

While the recession is testing this generation of Boomer women’s beliefs, they are more than up to the challenge with nearly 8 out of 10 reporting that “the older I get, the more resilient I become.”   This insight is one of the many garnered from a new resilience survey conducted by VibrantNation.com, “Boomer women are in fact growing more resilient during hard times and their coping strategies and belief systems are reaching new levels of effectiveness in the face of challenge and change,” said Stephen Reily, Vibrant Nation Founder and CEO. “This influential and fast-growing demographic, who we’ve termed ’Vibrant Women,’ value their own spirituality and ability to adapt when times get tough despite their eroding trust in resources they say they can no longer count on, such as financial advisors, Social Security, religious institutions and pop psychology.”  On a spiritual level, Boomer women are finding their own paths to allow spirituality to support them during the recession and are accepting that they can’t control everything that happens.

  • Only 4% of those surveyed report that they are spending less time and/or placing less importance on spirituality now than before the recession.
  • Twice as many respondents (60%) believe that while they might influence the things that happen to and for them, the ultimate outcome is in God’s hands. Only 26% believe they create their reality and that if they think positively, they will get what they’re asking for.
  • While 68% report that they are less optimistic in regards to their expectations about the future than they used to be, more than half of this subset “accept” this.
  • 44% find inspiration in the beliefs and philosophies learned from books, speakers, coaches, workshops or other sources outside of organized religion while only 23% find inspiration from their current religious communities and only 8% find inspiration from the religious communities in which they were raised.
  • 50% of the respondents turn to personal prayer and meditation to keep their spirits up, with only family (61%) cited as a larger factor when it comes to influences that help them keep their spirits up during these challenging times.

On a financial level, Boomer women share increasing concern about their own financial and health benefits, and distrust of those who advise them on financial issues.

  • 62% are increasingly worried that they will not receive the same level of Social Security and Medicare benefits that their parents did.
  • 67% either trust their financial advisors and institutions less than before the recession or never trusted them in the first place.

Survey results came from more than 500 smart, successful women aged 50-70 who are VibrantNation.com members, e-newsletter subscribers, Facebook fans and Twitter followers.

Advertisements

A trusted name to young girls and women since its launch in 1987, the Caboodles brand has a fresh, new look and website this holiday season. In addition, they have added a new product to their fun, fashionable and functional line of organizers, aptly named In My Case™. In My Case, the first custom molded design released in over ten years, launched at Ulta in September 2009 and Target in October 2009.  To promote the launch of In My Case, the company created “Caboodle-isms” – statements that were designed to promote the importance of individuality. “Branded phrases like: In My Case…I’m open to possibilities’ or ‘In My Case…beauty starts on the inside’ or ‘In My Case my looks are never overlooked’ can be practical or emotional or in the best case, both. It’s a way for us to illustrate the uniqueness of the product and our customers on a more personal level,” said Jesse Simpkins, Vice President of Marketing. Caboodles will be rolling out a social media campaign surrounding the new In My Case product and Caboodle-isms, and has secured partnerships with two teen-focused organizations – the Step Up Women’s Network “Spoken Word” program in Chicago and the Young Tykeoons program at James Jordan Boys & Girls Club and Family Life Center. “Since 1987 Caboodles has been inspiring young women to be proud of who they are,” says Kathy Hurt, Director of Marketing and Product Development. “We like to think of ourselves as their fun, quirky friend that’s been with them from their first lip gloss to their first college application.”

According to data released as part of the MRI Fall 2009 study, Forbes’ audience is now larger than at any time in the company’s 92-year history, representing the largest audience reach for any business title in the last 15 years. Leading the business category, Forbes’ total audience has increased 11.6% during the past year, and now delivers more than 6 million readers—2 million which are female readers representing a 20% growth in its female readership over the past year.  

In commenting on the new MRI results, Timothy Forbes, President and Chief Operating Officer of Forbes said, “As this new data indicates, never before have people been more hungry for business insight and information. As the most trusted source, Forbes is gaining readers, and advertisers who choose to pull back right now are missing a true opportunity to reach not only the largest audience for business coverage, but also the greatest number of senior business decision makers, including two million women.”

As we spend time this week giving thanks, we want to thank you for sending us your great marketing-to-women ideas and campaigns and turning to us for all the latest information on how to successfully connect with today’s female consumer.  Here are some great marketing-to-women stories you can enjoy during your holiday travels and visits:

Thirty Women Entrepreneurs To Follow On Twitter
Forbes, November 24, 2009
A great list of women for you to add to your Twitter lists.

Are marketers reaching out to women?
American Public Media, November 24, 2009
Marketing-to-women expert Mary Lou Quinlan talks about why “women can’t be trusted when it comes to why they buy products.”  Great interview with insight from her new book, “What She’s Not Telling You.”

Climate change:  Are women the solution?
The Christian Science Monitor, November 24, 2009
A new UN report says that women are the key to helping countries prepare for climate change and mitigating the damage.

iVillage has launched its new food site (www.ivillage.com/food), a modern online food destination specifically designed for women and moms who want to simplify meal planning, eat healthier, and spend more time with their families around the table. This marks the second phase in a site-wide relaunch, which takes a new approach to women’s media and caters to the needs of today’s busy women who live their lives online. McCormick, a global leader in the sale of spices, herbs and seasonings, will be the launch advertiser for the new food site. “iVillage is the only place where women’s everyday needs are met with tools and a community to support them. Food, a topic central to all women, is a key component in delivering experiences around the things that women care about most,” said Jodi Kahn, EVP, iVillage. “We know women are the primary shoppers and cooks in the home, and have designed the new site with a real-life approach to how they consume, shop and integrate food into their lives.”  According to new iVillage research conducted by GFK Roper just this week, 73 percent of women online already rely on the Internet to plan family meals. Tapping into this trend, iVillage is unveiling a highly personalized set of tools with over 139 categories to help women manage their shopping lists, food preferences, health needs, dietary needs and even allergy considerations in innovative ways.  Kahn also announced a partnership with Time Inc.’s MyRecipes.com, which will deliver a special array of dishes from top brands such as Real Simple, Cooking Light and Southern Living. This marks the first time Time Inc. has shared its recipes with an outside company.  To help advertisers become fully integrated with a woman’s daily routine and leverage the thousands of conversations happening in the iVillage community, there will be a host of partner-driven programs available at launch.

As the launch advertiser, McCormick will promote our spices and signature recipes. “McCormick is a brand women trust for all of their cooking needs, and we are thrilled to have a digital partner like iVillage Food to extend our brand online to a key target audience for us,” said Laurie Harrsen, Director of Consumer Communications at McCormick.  iVillage will continue its relaunch with next month’s Astrology debut, followed by Health, Beauty and Family throughout the first half of 2010.

AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company just launched two new applications for Apple’s iPhone and iTouch. The free apps, available for download from iTunes, provide women consumers on-the-go access to financial calculators to help them keep track of financial objectives. The company released the iPhone apps in support of its education and empowerment program, “The AXA Equitable Connection: Women, Wealth and Wisdom.”  “Women are pulled in many different directions and they often do not have the time to focus on managing their money,” said Barbara Goodstein, EVP and Chief Innovation Officer for AXA Equitable. “We launched these applications to help women take control of their finances whenever and wherever they want to.”  Users can download the apps from the iTunes App Store by searching for AXA Equitable directly from their iPhone or iTouch devices, or from iTunes on their computer. The two apps currently available include:

  • Retirement Income Calculator – Users can estimate how much monthly income their retirement savings plan may provide.
  • College Savings Plan Calculator – Individuals can determine the monthly savings amounts needed to help meet their education funding goals.

Additional apps expected to be released in the coming weeks include:

  • Retirement Shortfall Calculator – Individuals can project financial shortfall or surplus at retirement, as well as understand how long their retirement savings may last.
  • Life Insurance Calculator – Consumers can understand how much coverage they would need to protect their families should they die.
  • Life Expectancy Calculator – Users can estimate their life expectancy, based on current age, smoking habits and several other important factors.
  • All-in-One Calculator – Combines all AXA iPhone apps for individuals who want to get a singular view of multiple aspects of their financial situation. 

Anne Fleming, President of Women-Drivers.com, was recently asked to address the Chrysler Women’s Forum at the company’s Auburn Hills headquarters.  Fleming pointed to the need for women to increasingly own their voice and power when negotiating and bargaining outside of the professional workplace.  Fleming, who was invited to appear by Judith Wheeler, Director of Global Advertising and the President of the Women’s Forum, said “It was an honor to speak to this prestigious group of women in the automobile industry. The Forum’s mission dovetails well with Women-Drivers.com, which is to encourage women to be engaged in industry and business by nurturing and leveraging their buying power. Together, they can help grow the viability of Chrysler and acceptance of its products, an integral part of the Forum’s objective.”  Fleming, who once struggled negotiating her own car purchase, is an advocate for women speaking up and embracing their purchasing power. “Women control $6 trillion dollars of consumer purchasing power,” she said, “Yet we still make $.78 cents on the dollar. It’s a rather interesting paradigm. Frankly, with women being the gatekeepers to so many brands and consumer spending in our economy, you would think women would make $1.25 to men’s $1.00.”  She asserted that the keys to women negotiating and bargaining effectively for themselves is simply culture. “When women practice negotiating and being more direct, they become more comfortable tackling these conversations in all areas of life, not just in the workforce,” she explained. “The result? Women are empowered and have more money in their purse, offering them even more freedom and opportunity.”

Neutrogena® had launched Neutrogena Holiday (http://holiday.neutrogena.com) where consumers can shop this season’s best beauty buys for family and friends. Offering a range of the brand’s best-selling and favorite cleansing, acne, anti-aging and body care products, Neutrogena Holiday is a convenient and easy-to-use beauty gifting resource to help simplify holiday gift purchasing and giving.

Shoppers can browse the Neutrogena Holiday Collection now through January 2010 for gift ideas that fit all ages and lifestyles on their gift lists.  And to keep everyone on budget, Neutrogena Holiday has seasonal offers including:

  • Free shipping on orders over $25
  • 25% off when you buy 3 or more products
  • Free samples with every purchase

A new study from Q Interactive and Social Media World Forum found women are actively engaging with brands as they dabble in Facebook favorites like Farmville and Causes. Furthermore, women are passionate and competitive about (Lil) Green Patches and Happy Aquariums, stocking up on “virtual currency” perhaps more often than they hit the ATM.  The study of U.S. women, of whom 50 percent play online games according to Pew Internet, sought to offer a clearer picture into this growing group and where brands do and can fit in. “As brands seek relevant and natural ways to shake hands with women via social media, the gaming and application marketplace holds tremendous potential to integrate in a consumer-friendly, meaningful way,” said Matt Wise, President, Q Interactive. “Women seek a partner to support their entertainment, which is exceptionally important given their busy lives.”  Some key findings:

  • 85 percent of those surveyed use five or less games and/or apps regularly, indicating an inclination to be loyal to a handful of favorites; approximately 15 percent regularly invest in six or more games/apps at a time
  • More than half (57 percent) are earning/spending virtual currency daily
  • Introduction to new games and apps rest heavily on word-of-mouth: Nearly three-quarters (74 percent) got involved in a game or app due to “a recommendation” by family or friend or because they “noticed a friend or family member’s score”
  • In interacting with games and apps, 57 percent feel virtual gifting – for example, giving a bag of virtual makeup from Sephora – is as meaningful as real life gifting
  • All but six percent (97 percent) of women prefer to earn virtual currency through either winning more or accepting a branded offer – versus paying for it with “real” money
  • While they game and app quite regularly, only one in ten women have actually used “real” money to purchase virtual currency; of that, 85 percent have spent under $100 in their gaming and app’ing activities – ever
  • Of women who have signed up for branded offers to get more virtual currency, 67 percent found the offer useful
  • 37 percent of those women chose the branded offers based on “content”; 17 percent went for offers with free products or services

The Discover® U.S. Spending Monitor, a monthly index of consumer spending intentions and capacity, found that in October, 58 percent of women rated the economy as poor, a Monitor record 9-point increase from September. Men rating the economy as poor actually dropped a point to 53 percent. Forty-seven percent of women also said the economy was getting worse, a 3-point increase from September, while 44 percent of men felt the same way, a 2-point increase from the previous month.  Women weren’t able to find comfort in their financial situations either. Twenty-eight percent rated their finances as poor, a 5-point increase from September. However, women who felt their finances were getting worse remained unchanged in October at 49 percent. “The Monitor has always shown that women tend to be less optimistic than men about the economy and their finances,” said Julie Loeger, SVP of Brand and Product Management for Discover. “But the record jump in the number of women rating the economy as poor and the pessimism over the current state of their finances may indicate a weak holiday shopping season ahead.”

 

 

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