The Untold Story of Women and The Web

A survey commissioned by Yahoo and Starcom Mediavest Group (PDF) found that  96 percent of women say that they frequently feel positive emotions while online. If your marketing doesn’t elicit a positive emotional reaction, then you’re missing an opportunity.

Qualitative findings from a Just Ask a Woman Live listening session identified eight personality profiles for women when they are online. 
  1. Digital Cowgirl – the internet pioneer
  • 51 percent of women say they love finding new and exciting websites on the internet
  • 42 percent say they will go online even if they are not looking for anything in particular
  • Where to find her: games websites
  1. Digital Cassandra – the influential predictor of “what’s next”
  • 43 percent of women say they tell all their friends about websites they like
  • 22 percent claim they are usually the first of their friends to discover an interesting website
  • Where to find her: news, finance, home & family and food & entertainment websites
  1. Digital Diva – uses the “smartest” sites
  • 16 percent of women say they use the Internet to buy luxury items.
  • Where to find her: shopping, travel, health & beauty, entertainment & gossip and finance websites
  1. Digital Debutante – new to the internet, but not a novice
  • 20 percent of women state that although they are relatively new to the internet, they are constantly learning about new applications and websites.
  1. Digital Detective – internet researcher
  • 82 percent of women say the Internet is the first place they go if they need to conduct research
  • 58 percent can spend hours on the Internet researching every aspect of an issue that they are interested in.
  • Where to find her: news, weather, finance, home & family and food & entertaining websites
  1. Digital Voyeur – uses the internet to anonymously observe
  • More than 20 percent of respondents use the internet to look up old friends or boyfriends
  • Where to find her: news, finance, games, home & family, food & entertainment and astrology websites
  1. Digital Socialite
  • 12 percent of women agree with the statement: “I use the Internet to help me plan my social life”
  • 15 percent say they have used the Internet to meet new people
  • Where to find her: travel, entertainment and gossip websites
  1. Digital Shopkeeper
  • Just over 10 percent of women say they have started an online business or have used the internet to generate income.
  • Where to find her: news websites

As noted in this report, much of the conventional wisdom about how and why women use
the Internet may actually be wrong. What is certain is that the digital dialogue between marketers and their female customers will never be the same. Reaching women on line will require greater insight, a better understanding of their attitudes and values, and the willingness to engage in an empowering dialogue.

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