Credit cards and women

Nov 16, 2015 Alberto Pierpaoli Oportunidades No comments

Days ago, a colleague and friend carried out a presentation on marketing and advertising to women for an organization that promotes the empowerment of women.

It struck me that among the executives present there was a very large delegation of women belonging to a very important international credit card.

This led me to make some reflections on credit cards and women.

In general, women complain that marketing and advertising do not understand them as women. Because they constrain them to very traditional roles or they talk to them as they talk to men, without taking into account that they are women, and as such, different.

Talking about credit cards, both the cards and the banks that market them, and in a greater proportion the latter, see the credit card as a vehicle for the compulsive consumption of women, particularly in products and/or services highly related to their femininity —cosmetics, clothing, hair salons, etc.

Cards have not yet considered that women today can be businesswomen, entrepreneurs, professionals, executives. In short, that women work alongside men and have consumptions that go beyond their status as women and mothers and shopping for the family.

This doesn’t mean that what the banks are doing is wrong, but to restrict women to their appearance and/or, as heads of a household, to buying products and services for their families, is to reduce them to women of the past century.

Women today have multidimensional roles, apart from working, being wives, housewives and heads of households. Some are sportswomen, college students, gardeners, drivers, community and social activists... etc. All women (and men) play a dozen or more roles. People choose products and services according to the roles they play. Different roles mean different needs and different marketing angles.

Credit cards can and should take into account this multidimensionality of women and not restrict them to their traditional roles. This is part of comprehending and understanding women.

Another thing to keep in mind is that women have values, purchase motivations and ways that are completely different to those of the men. To mention some differences, women are altruistic, want to improve the world, try to empathize with others and always think beyond themselves, in their family, their children. It is necessary to consider these cultural differences of gender applied to consumption at all our points of contact with women. This is also part of comprehending and understanding women.

A campaign that connected emotionally with women was MasterCard’s "Priceless," with very well told stories about all the things in life that money can't buy.  What we need to highlight is precisely this emotional bond with women, given that this is very important for them, and not so much for men.

And if we talk about advertising, there are forms of communication that are very different from those of men. For example, the language of women is totally different to that of men. Women are interested in the smallest details and stories, while men are only interested in the "titles" of things and not going into details, that bores them. That’s the reason we can use longer texts with women and tell stories.

Credit cards also have historical information on their clients and can carry out targeted ads "one-to-one" or through their monthly connection with them. The opportunities opening up here are endless.

So far we have spoken of "off line" advertising. When we go to "on line," it is important the use that can be made of today's social networks (Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, etc.) considering that women are mostly attracted to them. And to this we must add the apparition of the smartphone that has revolutionized the possibilities of the cell phone. The opportunities that arise from combining mobility with social networks are immense. The use of these new techniques and opportunities is also to comprehend and understand women.

In short, there is the possibility of combining new and old media with a new way of approaching women and to make them feel comprehended and understood by credit cards.

And if we can make them feel satisfied with how our card treats them, we'll be sure to be on the right track, which will result in the success and growth of our business.      

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