In their book “Don’t Think Pink” the authors Lisa Johnson and Andrea Learned call for the need of Transparent Marketing to attract female customers. Over the last years women became the key- customer especially in the home furnishing business.
Transparent Marketing supports credibility. Credibility translates into trust; trust translates into relationship, and relationship can translate into sustained sales. The trick about this approach is to focus on the need of women without directly pointing to it. Here are some areas to emphasize on:
1. Focus on key customers
Instead of trying to be there for everybody, the focus should be on a specific customer group. This small group of customers will later on attract a larger audience. Choose niche marketing over mass marketing.
2. Know your customer
Find out as much as possible about your customer. Find out how they act and react. Communicate online and offline as much as you can and listen carefully. Make sure that the message you are sending online through your website and social media is consistent with your real life activities. What are the challenges of your customer? What is their motivation? What are they afraid of? What are their dreams?
3. Be present
Women are always thinking about their family, friends and neighbors. Make sure your customers can use the relationship with you to improve their social connections. Take advantage of the power of word-of-mouth-networks. Be at the right places at the right time, so that your customers always keep you in mind. Work together with other brands for common goals to reach out and explore new markets.
4. Open up
Keep improving the way you make the life of your customers better. Inform your customers about all aspects of your business. Include your customers in your decision process. Always ask for feedback. Use your testimonials to reach out to other customers. Work with referrals as much as possible.
5. Be emotional
Women like to be taken away by stories about how your product will improve the quality of life. Capture her imagination to help her understand how your product or service will fit into her life. Select images, messages and stories that will authentically reflect the values of your customers. A good story will give them the tools they need to visualize what it will be like to interact with your brand.
Apply your marketing to all senses of the customer. The customer will recognize the small things, the background music and the color of your displays and will pay more attention to the message of your store. Offer some little extras that the customer will discover herself.
Never push anyone into buying something. Be sure all questions are answered before the sale will be closed. It’s the experience with your brand that builds the bond with your customer.
6. Be Bona Fide
Your brand should be different from others and stick out of the crowd. Don’t follow your competition!
Show personality and be authentic. Be honest with the strengths and weaknesses of your brand. Work with real life situations to promote your product instead of idealized scenarios. For example showrooms must not be perfectly cleaned up as a display.
Be consistent in what you say and what you do. Two-faced messages disturb your credibility. Encourage questions and provide as much information as possible. Make sure this information can be shared publicly.
Source: Don’t think Pink by Lisa Johnson and Andrea Learned, 2004