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The fastest way to offend Millennial women in marketing

The fastest way to offend Millennial women in marketing iMedia Editors

Hiring unrealistic celebrities as role models

Women who are looking for brands they can connect with generally want to see people who represent them and their struggles. They want their image to be represented accurately, and need individuals to connect with who are facing the same challenges. When you hire a beautiful, perfect-looking celebrity to represent your product, you're conveying the message that all women should aspire to that ideal. This is a huge mistake.

Today's women, especially Millennials, are attracted to a variety of celebrity bloggers, vloggers, and YouTube personalities. Why? Because these real-life people are dealing with and talking about problems that most women are experiencing. Whether it be hair care, health, career tips, or lifestyle, women want to be represented by others who are in the same boat, not people who pretend to be.

Michelle Breyer, president of TextureMedia Inc, speaks to iMedia about why choosing to have real-life online personalities representing your brand is the best strategy for reaching today's Millennial woman.

Not being honest about your product's effectiveness

Millennial women are bombarded by choices. They love to try many products to find the one they love most. The brand they choose becomes a part of their lives, maybe for the next several years. Because of the amount of choices female consumers have, they are very particular about what they choose to purchase.

What does this mean? You only get one chance to make an impression with your product. If you market your brand as the best solution for the problem it solves and women find out that it doesn't work, you've lost a potential brand loyalist.

Bailey Dyer from Olay explains why your upfront honesty is a huge factor in capturing the attention and repeat business of today's Millennial woman.

Stereotyping their image = disaster

There's no faster way to offend today's Millennial females than portraying them as stereotypes in advertising. This doesn't include portraying them as super models, exclusively. Mothers are not always busy, frumpy, and stressed. Teens are not always unintelligent, reckless, and immature. Regardless of the life stage, if you start portraying Millennial women to a low common denominator, you're just going to end up making them angry.

Instead of sticking to formulaic stereotypes, brands should investigate the dynamic realities to any given life stage. The closest you can accurately portray a life stage, the stronger connection you will make.

Kelly Gaun from Kin Community talks about why the Dove approach to female marketing is a model for a successful strategy in this regard.

You are not giving women a voice

Don't adopt a brand-centric marketing approach. Your strategy needs to focus on the consumer, and a big part of that is giving the customer a strong voice in your marketing conversation. Women are an especially strong and vocal group. They want to be able to communicate their problems, compliments, and suggestions to your brand. Whether that conversation is on social or traditional media, you should be using this feedback as a part of your marketing strategy to let women know you hear them.

No one knows this better than the retail giant Macy's. Jennifer Kasper, the brand's GVP of digital media and multicultural marketing, tells us why it's crucial to give today's woman a strong and vocal place at your advertising table.

You're not listening

Lastly, for all you male marketers out there, remember that sometimes you need to take a backseat when entering a marketing conversation where your female colleagues may be an authority. No one knows how to market to women better than female marketers. Listen and let them lead the strategy.

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"Sumner County Commissioners not impressed" image via Flickr.

iMedia Communications, Inc. is a trade publisher and event producer serving interactive media and marketing industries. The company was founded in September of 2001 and is a subsidiary of Comexposium USA.  ...

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