Surprise! Not All Women Think Alike

Surprise! Not All Women Think Alike

Reader Comments (30)

  1. Holly,

    And it sure isnt limited to soccer moms:)

    We’ve all run across people (even marketers) who think:

    – everyone in Texas is a beer drinking redneck
    – everyone in Montana is like the unabomber
    – every woman in NYC is like the Sex in the City girls

    and so on.

    As you illustrated with the profiles, people simply *have* to get to know their clients and prospects, rather than just sticking them in a nice easy to categorize box and treating them like the cattle.


  2. Nice job, but I’d like to see the ad copy targeting women like me – the “tough sells,” who, for environmental reasons (raw sewage dumped into the ocean), personal health reasons (norovirus, anyone?) and many other reasons (tacky, obese tourists), would never in a million years go on a cruise and rub elbows with the woman who wants to go “shopping til her credit cards are exhausted.” Blech. If you could convince me, you could convince anyone.


    ~Joy (cruise-hater)

  3. Interesting commentary. However, I’m another hard sell and don’t think I’d ever go on a cruise. I’ve been in Jamaica, in St. Martin, in Key West, etc. when cruise ships came in, dumping their passengers. It seemed sad that these people would see so little of these beautiful destinations. I love being on an island and enjoying it for lots of days and nights.

    Mary Montague Sikes, author of Secrets by the Sea, set on the island of Antigua, April 2008 release

  4. Thanks for the great post, Holly.
    I often find it helpful to think of a real person I know who fits the description of the target, and write as if I’m recommending the product to that person. Not only does this help break down stereotypes, it can also help you write warmer, more genuine copy.

  5. Great point. However, what should businesses do about it? Clearly, businesses can’t target each and every individual. Should they target more specific audiences, or create a bunch of different ads for each type of audience? How does one decide when they’re being too general and when they’re being too narrow?

  6. Very interesting commentary. What about the potential cruise customers who really don’t fit the “soccer mom” sterotype? For example, DINKs or singles? Granted, focused advertising can’t be all things to all customers, but to Cindy’s point, how do businesses (and copywriters) find the right balance?

  7. You hit it on the nail Holly…not every one is alike. And our marketing messages must authentically address it.

    Each woman wants your company to regard her as if she is the most important person on this Earth – and for you…she is.

    Women are such multifaceted and awe-inspiring humans who crave that your company gets to know who she is and what she wants BEFORE you try to cram your marketing message down her throat.

    Thus, to get her attention, you HAVE to factor her story, preferences, and her desires into the equation.

    It’s about be geniuinely interested in what it is that she longs for that you take the time to actually listen to and become intimately acquainted with her true story, her needs, and her unspoken desires.

    Holly…just wanted to say thanks for sharing your insight.

  8. Very insightful article, it’s so easy to get caught up in stereotypes. In fact, the human brain automatically creates and categorizes things into stereotypes and later uses them as a shortcut when making certain quick decisions. It is a person’s first instinct to try to fit whatever they are looking at into a certain category, and it is very hard to break away from that.

  9. Marketing folk seem obsessed with stereotyping and classifying everyone. I think they just can’t cope with the idea that everyone is different, and that sometimes approaches have to be flexible.

  10. Personas have been my number one tool for writing copy that not only makes the client happy, but really engages the audience.

    Writing to personas humanizes and emotionally authenticates the message in a way that is hard to describe, but easy to see when done well.

    Kudos for the great, specific illustrations.

  11. Holly,

    As I read, I was screaming, “Yes! Yes! Yes!” Thank you for illuminating the need to look beyond generalizations and superficial categories to truly connect with people. I am often turned off by the “pink” and “soccer mom” marketing strategies and your post clearly articulated the need to go deeper.

    Thank you!


  12. I’m a new comer, It’s a good & informative site for copy writing learners. I don’t agree with most of the comments, b/c i have observed that most of the Women think alike in certain matters, so is there anyone who can convince me on this subject?

  13. @Saad, as human beings we all share commonalities. I believe the point of the post was to not make general assumptions about how any one group makes a buying decision. In marketing, we can start with broad assumptions such as marketing to a certain demographic but taking the extra step of identifying and writing to personas within that demographic will give your messages greater power and authenticity because you connect with a “person” not a generalized category. The side benefit is that you will capture more of your target market by focusing on smaller details.


  14. Thanks Karen for convincing me, i got your point, i hope everyone will agree with this. Is it your experience that you have given a good picture of marketing? Well i have no interest in marketing in other words i have not a business mind so its really difficult for me to target markets by talking on smaller issues, i will try to take interest in it.

  15. Very interesting post will ahve to try this some more iIhave in the past built personas to use as admins and posters on some female oriented sites.

    Ps isnt the Susan persona Realy A Suzi at heart 🙂
    PPs have you got her phone number 🙂

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