shopping hurryI was delighted to be invited to deliver a presentation at  the conference ‘Purse Power: How to Engage and Influence the New Irish Female Consumer’ hosted by RD Communications recently. It has been some time since I have been asked to specifically speak about marketing to a female audience but with around 300 attendees at the conference there is clearly an interest in this topic.

As part of the preparation I also had the opportunity to get involved in Irish research developed for the conference and in collaboration with Rachel Dalton of RD Communications and Oisin Byrne of iReach. Here is a summary of the Irish research I presented.

  • We explored the categories that female Irish consumers research after receiving a recommendation for a product or service – the most popular being holidays (78%), electronics and household appliances (62%), PC’s and technology (59%) and entertainment e.g. movies and restaurants (58%)
  • We found that men search online more than women in the categories of automotive, electronics and household appliances, technology and telecommunications
  • 87 percent of female Irish consumers research online before making a decision to purchase a product or service
  • 84 percent of female Irish consumers indicated they are more likely to purchase when they can find recommendations about products and services online (this was 92% for the 18-24 year old age group)
  • Overall, 70 percent of female Irish consumers who comment that negative information online has made them change their mind about purchasing a product or service recommended to them
  • Overall, 80 percent of female Irish consumers who comment that positive information online has reinforced their decision to purchase a product or service recommended to them
  • When researching to make a purchase, the majority of female Irish consumers start their search with a search engine
  • When researching to make a purchase, for female Irish consumers, the next most popular place to start a search is a retailer site
  • When researching to make a purchase, a minority of female Irish consumers search on a manufacturer’s site, with this being more likely for an older consumer
  • 47% of female Irish consumers had used a daily deal or group buying site to make a purchase in the last 3 months.

I also talked about global research in my presentation (which you can download here) and summarised my session with the following seven points:

  1. Learn about your own consumer – what do they search for when looking for your products or services and what device do they use
  2. Extend your marketing personas – include digital insights about your consumer
  3. Integrate mobile marketing – include mobile marketing and mobile commerce in your marketing plans
  4. Meet consumers where they are online – experiment with social commerce and look for ways to build engagement in Facebook with the development of apps
  5. Hyper-target and personalise your communications – ensure that your adverts and your marketing message is relevant to your consumer and target audience
  6. Invest in your website – search engine optimisation is critical and consider integrating the ability for consumers to leave reviews
  7. Proactively manage your online reputation – invest resources to track brand mentions and use the information to enhance products and services alongside your sales and marketing processes

In these challenging economic times remember that price and value for money, service and quality will help you retain your customer and attract more word of mouth referrals.

I hope this research inspires you to further understand the female consumer who in Western Europe and the US strongly influences consumer purchases.

I will be publishing the extended research report later this month, but in the meantime, if you have any questions about marketing to women using online or offline communications don;t hesitate to post them to my Facebook Page.

You can see my presentation about marketing to women in the digital age below.

Digital Influence And The Female Irish Consumer