Do You Know the 4 Themes of Marketing to Women?

Have you seen the new Citi Women & Co advertising campaign yet?.  The new campaign designed by Womenkind is a good one for marketers to learn from.  I’ve summarized what I see as the lessons, in this blog post.

Take a quick look at the print ads, then come back to me and read the lessons below.

The lessons from the Women & Co ad campaign fall into the Four Themes I’ve been developing and teaching over the years.  If you want to do better at selling or marketing to women, these Four Themes are critical to incorporate into your sales & marketing strategies.

1) Empowerment.
Empowerment is about self-esteem, finding confidence in one’s own abilities.  Blowing the doors off of what you thought you could possibly do.  Empowerment is about power over yourself and your abilities.  Contrast that with Power  – a more masculine construct for advertising – competitive, aggressive, blowing the other guy off the road.  So, Empowerment is referring to your relationship with yourself, Power is referring to your relationship to others.

This is what the actual Women & Co service itself is built on – women’s attraction to financial services companies who empower them.  It’s a membership program designed to support, empower, and educate women on financial topics.  See how the words in their ads reflect that theme:
“(women) have their own ideas…”
“where women build financial confidence and knowledge
“The strength of women, backed by Citi”

2) Eco-System.
Eco-system is all about leveraging women’s propensity to create and value “community” and “connection”.  How do you provide a platform for women to connect with like-minded women?   How do you leverage her Eco-System to access a broader client base?  How do you ensure your message survives transmission among her Eco-system?  How do you add value to her Eco-system?

In the Women & Co ads, you can see it’s in the words:
“You may have something in common with…”
“where wisdom, wealth, and women meet
“Women & Co is a financial community…”

3) Essential Self.
Real people, real communication, real words.  Essential self is all about showing who you really are as a company, and allowing her to be who she really is.  Part of portraying Essential Self is in having “real people” in your advertising – whether clients or employees.  The Dove campaign is another perfect example of “Essential Self”.

In the Women & Co ads, they use images of actual women clients – not airbrushed models – that the target market can identify with.  These real women are aspirational (well-dressed, well put together), but within reach, because they are real people.

4) Ease of Life.
Instead of thinking ‘what can I sell her?’, think ‘how can I help her?’.  Women are busy, time-pressured and are looking for vendors who understand that and do something about it.

The themes of Women & Co series of ads: ‘Balancing’, ‘Running’, ‘Managing’ and ‘Learning’ theme validates the many – often competing – roles of women and the constant balancing act that women feel they live.  Women & Co connects to their hearts through these ads and seems to say “we understand” by entering the conversation that’s already going on in her head.

Now You:
How does your advertising & selling masterfully portray the essential themes of Empowerment, Eco-System, Ease of Life, and Essential Self?

If you’re not sure, call or email me to book a High Heel Audit. A High Heel Audit is the fastest and most cost-effective way to ensure your strategies & tactics are designed to target women.  Call 250-448-7975 or email to find out how my High Heel Audits can help you.  Talk to you soon 🙂


6 Responses to Do You Know the 4 Themes of Marketing to Women?

  1. This is powerful stuff, Cristi. Your post has made me really take a second look not only at WHAT I’m offering, but how. Zowee!! I am going to make some changes. Thank you for offering such powerful and useful strategies.

  2. Cristi Cooke says:

    Thanks Dyana! I’m glad you’re getting some actionable steps out of the post. Your initiative is so inspiring! You’re awesome!

  3. On behalf of Women & Co. and all our members, thank for you for recognizing our ad campaign!

  4. Cristi Cooke says:

    Ladies & gentlemen…Linda Descano’s in tha’ house! President & COO of Women & Co, thank you for your comment! And really, the thanks goes to you and your team for creating such solid benchmarks for the industry, time and again. Great work. Looking forward to seeing your team in Chicago M2W!

  5. […] This is a marketing to women win because it hits the bulls-eye on two essential Themes of Marketing to Women: […]

  6. […] This is a marketing to women win because it hits the bulls-eye on two essential Themes of Marketing to Women: […]

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