The conversation about “women’s issues” is at the center stage of our political discourse. Campaigns and allied groups are adopting advanced technologies and new outreach programs to reach female voters on an unprecedented scale. Despite the growth of data and analytics, a strategic approach to communicate clear messaging to women remains challenging.
Susan B. Anthony, an icon of the women’s suffrage movement, once said, “Modern invention has banished the spinning wheel, and the same law of progress makes the woman of today a different woman from her grandmother,” and her century-old wisdom speaks to the problems in today’s communications.
Women communicate through conversations, and they are motivated by emotional connections. If there is no connection, there is no communication. The “ABC all about me” approach makes it clear to women that the messenger is only interested in speaking to them, rather than speaking with them. The research published by Greenfield Online for Arnold’s Women Insight showed that 91% of women feel misunderstood by advertisers, and women ignore paid advertising more often than men.
Action Tip: When writing a message, pretend you are messaging one person, an “ideal reader.” This will help you to create a more personal and engaging message.
With the growing responsibilities at home and at work, today’s women often multitask when they are in media consumption mode. Women are engaging multiple media touchpoints while they are seeking and sharing information. They expect instant access to information, and they want greater efficiency that makes their lives easier.
Action Tip: Make it easy for women to engage with you, and create different contents for them to consume in their own time. Make signups and calls to action simple and easy to understand.
The women of today are not only different from their grandmothers, their connectivity and sociability also greatly differ from women of 5 years ago. Women are not only changing with their evolving life stages and relationships, they are changing the ways they choose to experience each life stage. In order to effectively engage with women voters, campaigns and allied organizations will have to go beyond the party rhetoric and polarizing issues, and speak with women based on their own terms.