Focusing on the feminine important in 2014 marketing strategies

In the early 20th century, mass marketing as we know it today was in its infancy.

Marketing professionals focused on the most affluent and influential demographic of society: white, land-owning, middle-aged men. It was salesforce-driven with appeals to logic and authoritative thinking. Manufacturers wanted to persuade their customers using logos and ethos, leaving out pathos (appeal to emotion) entirely.

The New Matriarchy

Today, however, women have a much larger role in society with more leadership positions, more college degrees, and more control over the family purse strings. Thus, brands who neglect the feminine aspects of advertising are doomed to failure. Mia von Sadovszky, the senior VP strategic planning director at advertising agency RPA (based in Santa Monica, California), calls this trend the “New Matriarchy.”

Building relationships

The New Matriarchy has spurred marketers’ focus on emotional appeals and relationships with customers. Sadovszky explained, “The best marketing today does a great job speaking to and building brand relationships with women and with men, because it resonates with a culture that is increasingly driven by women and women’s values.”

Ceding control to customers

Rather than emphasizing manufacturing, in 2014, successful brands are service-oriented with an eye to “fostering long-term relationships.” This feminine quality is what has encouraged companies to have free, open dialogue with their customers. Instead of a one-way monologue, marketing is now considered a conversation between the business and its audience. Sadovszky said this means, “We cede control to customers. We want to help them create communities around our brands and causes.” In order to do this, Sadovszky said marketers must “focus on aesthetic value and visual cues across every touch point so we can break through.”

Successful companies

One example of a successful brand is Nike and its tagline “Just do it,” which, rather than being used as a masculine dare or battle cry, has been transformed into a self-improvement mantra. Another example: Doritos decision to allow customers to create and vote on their favorite Super Bowl ads each year. Even Honda has softened its image by being customer-friendly, showing “love” to loyal customers.

Sadovszky predicts this matriarchal trend will only continue to grow, signifying marketers shouldn’t plan on changing campaign strategies any time soon.

Source: Adage


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