Marketing From A Woman's Point of View

Burger King Loses Marketing Machismo – Focuses On Women

There’s some interesting marketing changes going on in Burger King’s conference rooms that women may appreciate.  The voice of the woman consumer has proven to be more powerful than what Burger King has anticipated.

Over the last few months you may have noticed Burger King’s controversial commercials targeted toward their male crowd. From their Sponge Bob SquareButt commercial which portrayed their creepy BK character measuring women’s butt size with a phone book, to their Super Seven Incher ad with the woman opening wide to fit her mouth around their sandwich…they have definitely NOT been trying to attract a female crowd.

Michelle Miller, from Wonder Branding, and I have seen eye to eye on the Burger King marketing and thanks to her post last week she has made me aware of Burger King’s new idea.

According to this most recent AdAge article, Burger King CEO John Chidsey, has had an epiphany.  He has gone from the macho cry of naming his “Super Fan” the 18-35 year old testosterone abundant guy to now include…yep, you guessed it….WOMEN.

Oh, John, how we knew this day was coming. Note the change of tone in the two AdAge articles.

AdAge article, November, 2009:

“Mr. Chidsey has taken great care to make sure investors and analysts know the meaning of “super fan,” or the young, hungry men who frequent fast-food chains, and respond to the chain’s edgier advertising.”

Now, after a 3.3% drop in US & Canada sales, Mr. Chidsey would like to clarify what their super fan really is in the February 2010 AdAge article:

“To clarify, it’s not just 18- to 34-year-old males, it’s all ages and all household demographics, with over half of them having children. And interestingly, over 29% are 50 years of age or older.”

Well, at least John had his “cool” moment with the guys.  Now it’s time to focus on sales.  Sales which come from a large demographic of women, mothers and grandmothers.  Hmmm.

How does Burger King respond?  They have decided to promote a lower calorie “Positive Steps” combo that will be promoted in women’s magazines to begin trying to court their female super fan.

Excuse me, but this is just insulting.  First you exploit women in your commercials to your male buddies, measuring the size of our ass and fantasizing about a woman opening wide for your big 7 incher…and now the first thing you do to court us back is offer low cal menu items to reduce our butt size?

That’s like having your husband go to the strip club and coming home with a blender and a can of Slim Fast for you because he “loves you” and just wants to see you healthy and happy. WTF?

Burger King would have made a better choice to begin luring alienated women consumers back by first appealing to our pocketbooks.  Offering lower priced items and more value.  Sure, I want low cal choices and I want healthy options for my family, but I wouldn’t accept it from Burger King now if it was free.

Chidsey says, “There is a lot of mythology out there that somehow we are not able to get things done…But when you lay out the right business case and people see what’s in it for them, they’ll vote yes.”

No, John.  I vote no.

Time to check your business case again and lay out a proper road to recovering the angry women that wrote 10,000 letters in protest to your “edgy” commercial.  Time to stop living in your past college glory days and focus on the women of today’s market.

What say ye? Share your thoughts below in the comments section.

To Your Success,

February 15, 2010   15 Comments

5 Online Resources For Finding Women’s News

As a woman entrepreneur I like to stay abreast of any breaking women’s news, statistics or generally interesting stuff that has to do with women in the marketplace and business world.  It’s important to know what’s being said about women, how our gender is being reflected in society and business, and to have the ability to interpret and spread the news.

Today’s Women To Watch post consists of my 5  online resources for women entrepreneurs that I’ve found helpful in keeping up to date on who’s who and what’s what in all things for women entrepreneurs, social media and business.

1.  Forbes Woman – ForbesWoman.com is one of the first things I read in the mornings.  The Forbes name is known for it’s business savvy news and they do a wonderful job at recognizing women rising to the top.

You may not have known this, but one of my articles was picked up by Forbes last month that featured 20 Top Social Media and Marketing Blogs Written by Women.  I was also honored to have been names one of Forbes Top 30 Women Entrepreneurs to Follow on Twitter! Maybe I’m a little biased, but you will not go wrong in staying up to date with the Forbes brand and adding their site to your online resources.

2. WomenEntrepreneur - Full of excellent articles written by talented women, I always find something inspiring to share when visiting.  Such as the article Lena West published today titled “The Two Best Ways To Respond To Positive Blog Comments”.  Can you guess what they are?  I will tell you this..I have not been doing them and I should!  You’ll find tips like these from women entrepreneurs to help you in your business.

3. Google Alerts – So, this isn’t exactly one site I turn to, but it is an excellent online resource for finding women’s news or any news you are particularly interested in.  I set Google alerts with keywords such as “women entrepreneur” “marketing to women” or “business women” and have Google send all the latest news results to my Reader.

You can use whatever keywords are significant for your niche, including your own keywords to keep up on what the competition is up to. (Tip: set up alerts with your own name, website and misspellings of your name to know when you’re mentioned somewhere else  and follow up with a comment)

4. Twitter Searches - Sometimes your Google alerts just don’t catch everything out there that may mention women’s news of some sort.  You never know what other keywords are being used when an author writes an article, so set up some searches on Twitter with similar keywords and Twitter will help you find any relevant info mentioned in tweets.

If you use HootSuite or TweetDeck you can do your search from there and set up a separate column just to monitor those keywords.  I’ve fallen in love with HootSuite for monitoring all my little niches, brands, etc!

5. Subscribe To Blogs – I can’t say enough about the power of Word of Mouth…if you are not staying in touch with the friends, mentors, and cwomen entrepreneurs in your target market you are doing yourself and others a disservice.  It is important to your growth to get to know other bloggers and recognize them when you come across anything that you’ve found interesting.  You’re building your own credibility along with theirs and you will learn a lot!

If you don’t know where to start in finding some great blogs to follow, be sure to check read my 20 Best Marketing and Social Media Blogs By Women and check out the blogrolls here and on other blogs you’ve found helpful.

What are your top resources for finding breaking news or information relevant to your niche?  Share them below in the comments…I’m sure I’ve missed some great ones and love new ideas!

To Your Success,

P.S. ~~> If you would like to be featured on Market Like A Chick, just check out the details on my Be Featured page.  You can choose to write a guest article of your own or be featured in an interview like this.  We want to hear from you!

February 3, 2010   15 Comments

Woman To Watch – Holly Hanna of The Work At Home Woman

Today marks the first official “Wednesday’s Women To Watch” post and I’m excited to start it off with such an inspiring lady as Holly Hanna.  Holly has built a wonderful network for women earning their living from home and given them many resources and opportunities to learn from one another.

Take a few minutes and learn a little more about Holly and how she brought her business to the success it is today.

Woman To Watch – Holly Hanna of The Work At Home Woman



To start off, Holly, could you please describe what you do and how you earn your living?

I am the publisher and founder of The Work at Home Woman, an online business resource dedicated to helping women and mothers acquire the skills and knowledge to be able to successfully work from home or become self-employed. To fund this business I also work part-time as a social media marketer for a small publishing company.

What most influenced you to launch your business?

My beautiful daughter… before I had my daughter I worked full-time as an RN Clinical Research Coordinator, but from the moment she was placed in my arms I knew that I would not be able to leave her in daycare and return to my full-time job. With the support of my husband, I was able to quit my full-time job and become a full-time stay a home mom; but after nine months of caring for my daughter I felt the need to exercise my brain.

I started my work at home search by asking past employers and friends if there was any work that I could do for them while caring for my daughter at home. My networking efforts paid off and in December 2007 I started working from home as a social media marketer. While working for the publishing company, I learned a lot of valuable marketing skills and decided to launch The Work at Home Woman as a way to help other women and moms find legitimate work at home jobs and opportunities.

Why do you think the female factor is so important in today’s economy and business world?

I believe that women bring a new and refreshing outlook to business and the economy. I think because so many new businesses are owned by women that the business realm is starting to reflect a more caring and nurturing environment that is conducive to a more altruistic actions. I think as more and more women start their own businesses that we will see many new and exciting changes that benefit all members of the community.

Have you used the marketing concept of tribes in your business?  Do you feel this concept can help other female entrepreneurs in their business pursuits?

Yes, I do use this concept in my business practice. I find that women are very receptive to helping each other out by sharing knowledge and lending emotional support freely – you just need to ask.

How do you use social media for your business?

I use social media first and foremost to meet new people and cultivate new and existing relationships. It has also been a wonderful way to moderately promote my site and get important news and updates.

What aspect of social media have you found to be the most help and/or most hindrance to your business?

Social media has really broken down the wall to physical boundaries; I am now able to connect with people from all over the world.

The downside to social media is that is can be very time consuming and distracting.

Have you had a mentor and if so, how has that helped you?

I haven’t had a specific mentor, but there have been a bunch of wonderful women who I have been able to ask questions and lean on in times of need. If you don’t have a mentor or career coach, I highly suggest joining a local business group where you can reach out to other members for support and information.

What would you say is the single biggest reason for your success?

There are really a couple of reasons… one because I am very motivated to make this work and secondly, I absolutely love what I am doing. I am able to help other women while taking care of my daughter, what better scenario can you ask for!

If you could step back in time to when you were just starting out, what advice would you give yourself knowing what you know now?

My advice to myself and other entrepreneurs would be to be more vocal. My very first graphic designer was totally unreliable and ended up taking advantage of me and the situation. I now know that if something doesn’t seem right, speak up and let your voice be heard. There is a difference between being polite and being taken advantage of.

Can you share with us any plans or lifetime goals (personal or business) that we can look forward to from you?

I have started to write a book and I hope to be finished with it by the end of 2010.

What is the best way for our readers to learn more about you or contact you for more information?

People can visit me at The Work at Home Woman, on Twitter @Holly_Hanna or on Facebook. They can also contact me at holly (at) theworkathomewoman (dot) com

Many thanks to Holly for stepping up and getting back to me after this week’s call for women entrepreneurs to be featured here!  Please leave your comments and any questions for Holly below.

To Your Success,

P.S. ~> Would YOU like to be featured on Market Like A Chick? If you have a great success or marketing journey you would like to share and use to inspire other women entrepreneurs let me know!  I will be featuring one woman each week for my new Wednesday’s Women To Watch posts.  You can find all the details and guidelines on my Be Featured page.

January 13, 2010   11 Comments

Sex In Marketing – Calling The Pot Black

So today, my friends, we talk about sex.  Not the actual act of sex, but the subject of sex and how women are affected by the mention of the word in business or blogging.  It should be interesting.

It was my intention today to make this post a tutorial on setting up your blog advertising using OIO Publisher. (Maybe Thursday) Instead, when I woke up this morning I noticed a pingback (a notice letting me know someone else had mentioned my blog and linked to it on theirs) from another woman entrepreneur that seemingly took offense to one of my article headlines.

You may remember that back in October I entered a contest to win passes to Blogworld 09 from John Chow’s blog.  John’s a pretty big name in the Internet marketing world, so I expected a lot of competition.  I was pretty stoked when I actually WON a weekend pass to the expo for my article!  There were a few tactics I used when I wrote that piece that I may share in a later post, but one of the main things I did was use a headline that would catch attention. It’s called baiting.

My “Offensive” Article

The article is titled “Will Give Great Blog For Passes To Blogworld“.  Catchy?  Provocative? A little shocking?  I hoped so.  Demeaning to women?  Umm…not so much.  But Adria Richards seems to think so and has included me in her rant on using sex to promote yourself and how it is demeaning to women.

So why is this article from October being brought up now? I was mentioned in Adria’s article “What’s Wrong With Using Sex To Sell Your Wordcamp Session?” because of my Blogworld article. Note the headline here.

Someone uses a sexual innuendo to promote their work. It works. Someone else cries “sexism” and “women’s rights” by quoting it & promoting their work. How are they different? It’s the same marketing ploy with a different spin.

The Drama

Adria was given the opportunity to speak and placed on the schedule for Wordcamp Boston. When Danielle Morrill submitted her subject “Getting the Money Shot: Making Screencasts Without Going Insane” for her shot to speak at Wordcamp, and made it to the finals, Adria protested by backing out of her scheduled session and has stirred up some controversy over the subject.

Here is the subject description that has offended Adria so much to leave the Wordcamp people high and dry:

Danielle Morrill – Producing a useful screencast, where an online product or service is demonstrated for the user and they are introduced to the UI of your website, can increase the number of people who convert to customers. This talk will leave viewers with practical advise for creating their own screencast, including a list of tools and resources. It will also outline some of the things to avoid, the pyschology of the editor, and how thinking like a porn director will help you be sure to achieve the “”money shot””. Take 1 Mac, 1 Flipcam HD, a whole lot of coffee, and one really sleep deprived Danielle and hilarity ensues.

When I read Danielle’s description I see more than just a reference to porn.  I see the opportunity to learn a lesson on screencasting that will be entertaining as well as educational.  Porn is a multi-million dollar business and I would love to learn psychology behind the marketing strategy even if I am not a big supporter.  Danielle never mentioned having shots of naked women in her presentation, (sorry guys) but rather, jokes about how fun she will make the session.

Coree’s Take On The Sex Issue

I’m a chick that’s okay with talking about sex fairly openly.  I don’t get offended at sexual innuendos, and in fact, am often the one that starts them.  Not all sexual reference is bad.  Not all porn is bad.  If a woman is being abused or oppressed then it’s different.  I know plenty of women that actually enjoy watching porn or visiting a strip club with their male partner. That doesn’t set that woman back 20 years in our progression to fight discrimination.

By not taking offense to sexual innuendos I am placing myself on the same playing level as a guy.  No longer do they have that power over me to think they can offend me or make me uncomfortable by talking about sex.  Now, if someone is openly being rude, discriminatory or demeaning they will have to watch out!  But, all in all, I’m comfortable with my sexuality and can laugh at our human desires because we are sexual beings.

I am all about respect for women and treating us fairly in all areas of life.  Women have definitely had to fight to gain the respect as an equally intelligent and capable being and not just a man’s sex toy.  It irks me when I see women displayed as good for nothing other than eye candy or as a dumb bimbo that can only get ahead by sleeping her way to the top.  But, that’s an extreme.

This whole controversy over something as simple as a tongue in cheek wink at our infatuation with sex is also extreme.  We know sex sells, we know that men are all over any mention of sex like flies on …well, you know.  So, to be intelligent enough to use a discreet marketing ploy to win a competition and call it demeaning is a little out of order.

The Humor Behind Sex in Marketing

Adria says in her article, “I don’t find pornography to be funny“.

No one was laughing about pornography itself.  The humor is in the obsession we have with porn or sex and how we can laugh at ourselves because of it. Every comedian I can think of has become wildly popular for the ability to get us to identify and laugh at our own humanity.

You may not agree with everything that comes out of Jenny, The Bloggess, mouth but I can tell you that she is very popular with both men AND women for her ability to do put a funny spin on the sex subject.  I consider myself pretty extreme at times, but sometimes Jenny can even have me going “Whoa!”.  Jenny just began writing for Sexis Magazine where her entire mission is to make fun of porn in her articles.  It’s not demeaning to her, and I’m pretty sure if someone tried to demean Jenny she would have her own unique way of turning that back on them.

Of course there is a point where it’s gone too far.  Having the chicks in ultra tight shorts and tanks to gain attention at a convention is blatant and out of place.  On the flip side, if a woman sponsored booth used a guy in a speedo to attract attention would you go over there?  Probably not cuz that’s just creepy. But I think we can make rational decisions on what’s extreme, what’s funny, and what’s tasteful.

Share Your Thoughts

I say more power to Danielle for not being afraid to use a man’s tactic in marketing her submission! She has my vote for Wordcamp Boston…and if you’d like to join me you have til 11:59pm EST tonight to add yours.  I think Danielle and I could have been great Mae Wests in another life, or at least women that know how to dish it up with the best of them.  :)

What’s your opinion on using sexual innuendos in marketing?  I know I’m opening up for some lively conversation,  but feel free to leave your comments below.  I look forward to hearing them!
To Your Success,

P.S. ~> I have several advertising spots available for bargain prices.  I feel like maybe I should be selling some sex toys along with the advertising after this post, but alas…it’s just an awesome deal on advertising your business where other women entrepreneurs voice their opinions.  ;)  Check out the pricing and availability and reserve your spot today.

January 12, 2010   17 Comments

Featured On Market Like A Chick: YOU!

Does your passion lie in giving women a creative, supportive and “smart” community to launch and sustain their businesses?  Here’s your chance to share your social and business mojo as a Featured Guest on Market Like A Chick.

There will be several ways to be featured and become a part of our community of super cool marketing chicks.  Even if you’ve never considered yourself cool…or a “chick”…you will find we have a wonderful group here that are all looking to learn, grow and support one another.

Write For Market Like A Chick

One-time guest bloggers or even ongoing guest contributors are welcome.

Are you passionate about a particular marketing topic?  I’m always looking for experienced writers who can write original and quality articles for Market Like A Chick.

Not a chick but still want to be featured?

Don’t be scared, guys…we welcome you too. Just check out this guest post Jim Gaudet wrote on the Blueprint to a Successful Future on the Internet. There are times when men are able to shed a different perspective on things that we, as women, may not have thought of. If you feel you can write an article that female marketers can relate to and benefit from then you are welcome to submit your article as well.

Before you submit a post, please take the time to look through and read some of the older posts and comments to get an idea of what the Market Like A Chick community is like. You can get some topic ideas from my first call for Guest Posts in this article.  Then read the guidelines on my Be Featured page and use the submission form there to submit your article for review.

Email Interview

Do you have a great success or marketing journey you would like to share and use to inspire other women entrepreneurs?  If you’re a woman entrepreneur (sorry guys – only women for this one),  and would rather participate via an email-interview format I will be featuring one woman each week for my new Wednesday’s Women To Watch posts.

To be featured in an interview format, please download and answer the interview questions you can find on my Be Featured page, then submit to coree (at) marketlikeachick (dot) com with “Guest Interview for MLC” in the subject line.

If you’d like to submit your interview as a video you can do that too, just keep the length between 5-10 minutes max.

More Features On The Way

I have another really cool feature up my sleeve as well.  I’d hoped to have it ready by this week, but there has been some delays.  (Mostly just me trying to figure out all the techy stuff!) I don’t want to give away too much right now, but you’ll love this new resource for both advertising your business and collaborating with others women entrepreneurs.

Hopefully I’ll have the bugs worked out and ready for you by next week.  Until then if you want to Be Featured here on Market Like A Chick I would be thrilled to work with you.    Send in your best and if you have some creative ideas for being featured, feel free to run them by me!

To Your Success,

January 8, 2010   16 Comments

20 Best Marketing and Social Media Blogs by Women

Over the last year I have learned a great deal from women in the field of marketing, social media, branding and entrepreneurship. While there are many female thought leaders in the marketing industry that I may have missed, this list contains the women that have made a difference in my life, my viewpoint, and continue to lead the way for women in business.

It’s up to each of us to find online content we find valuable to our growth and business needs, and then to consume and put into action the advice and tips from the experts.  This list is full of women that I have found to be leaders, women that are consistently providing relevant and useful information to the marketing and social media industry.  I appreciate each and every one of them and recommend these ladies as the Chicks Pick Best in Blog – Marketing and Social Media 2009.

Update: This article was picked up by ForbesWoman and published on Forbes.com.  Now these ladies have some promo they really deserve!  See the article here: Forbes 20 Best Marketing and Social Media Blogs by Women

Conversation Agent, Valeria Maltoni @ConversationAge Valeria helps businesses understand how customers and communities have changed marketing, PR, and communications – and how to bring value in this new environment. She also hosts the #kaizenblog Twitter chat on Fridays where other professional and aspiring conversationalists share their best tips.

Lipsticking, Yvonne DiVita, @Lipsticking – Yvonne heads up a very talented group of women bloggers including Lena West, Donna DeClemente, Mary Schmidt and Robbi Hess.  These ladies bring a powerful female voice to the marketing world assisting many brands, agencies and not-for-profits in their marketing to women strategies.  You’re sure to appreciate the honest and outspoken articles found on Lipsticking.

WonderBranding, Michele Miller, @MicheleMiller -Wonder Branding brings you the latest news and views on marketing to women. Michele keeps us up to date on how brands are responding to the female customer.  You can read the interview with Michele Miller that I conducted earlier this year here.

She Takes On The World, Natalie MacNeil, @NatalieMacneil – Women entrepreneurs will come to find She Takes on the World a necessary add to their RSS reader.  Natalie offers excellent articles focusing on building your business from the ground up and often brings in other female experts for her “In Her Heels” interviews.

Women On Business – Susan Gunelius @Susan Gunelius – Find news and information you need to be successful in the business world from this network of female thought leaders.  Articles focus on leadership, market trends and entrepreneurship.

V3 Integrated Marketing – Shelly Kramer @ShellyKramer – Shelly and Laura Lakes run the Kansas City based marketing company V3 and offer their best tips here on their blog in areas such as social media, blog marketing, public relations and traditional marketing for businesses.  Shelly is a firecracker that has a knack for engaging with her community and immediately putting a smile on your face.  A must follow on Twitter as well as her informative blog.

Client Magnet – Bernadette Doyle @BernadetteDoyle – an amazing website that teaches how to attract Clients Like a Magnet, Bernadette teaches how to use attraction marketing to change your mindset to begin having clients seek you rather than you grasping after them.  A very positive blog which is sure to have an impact on your business and your life.

Women Grow Business – Jill Foster, @JillFoster - As Editor for Women Grow Business, Jill brings together a network of female entrepreneurs to discuss  leadership, marketing, operations (especially in tough economic times), benefits of social cause partnership, talent retention, online presence, entrepreneurship, social technology, mentorship, failure, and success. You will want to come back often.

Sheconomy – Stephanie Holland @SheconomyStephanie takes pride in being able to reach a guy’s mind on marketing to women.  Sheconomy is a great resource to come back to for statistics on women in the marketplace as well as getting a clearer perspective on WHY brands should be marketing to women.

ClickNewz – Lynn Terry, @LynnTerry – Lynn has been in internet marketing for years and knows how to give you the step by step process on how to recreate her success for yourself.  You’ll find tips from article marketing to search engine optimization and everything in between.  Lynn also has a forum community that is a great tool for getting quick answers. –

Startup Princess – Kelly King Anderson @StartupPrincess – Kelly operates Startup Princess, an organization for women entrepreneurs everywhere to network, learn, share, and mentor one another. Kelly and her Fairy Godmothers are always willing to help you grow your business.

ConnieBensen.com – Connie Bensen @cbensen – Connie Bensen is a leading authority on cultivating online communities.  Her blog is an excellent resource to find mentorship and inspiration for others pursing a career in Community Management or for brands seeking to improve their community engagement strategies.

Beth’s Blog- Beth Kanter @Kanter – Beth is the leading expert on cause marketing and using social media for non-profits.   A place to capture and share ideas, experiment with and exchange links and resources about the adoption challenges, strategy, and ROI of nonprofits and social media.

Gwen Bell -Gwen Bell @GwenBell – Gwen knows social media and is the example of what a networker does to create connections across the world with seemingly no effort at all.  Her posts will cause you to stop and think, not just hand feed you information.  Perky, smart and a must read for those interested in anything Web 2.0.

HorsePigCow – Tara Hunt, @MissRogue specializes in community marketing—delighting and enchanting the people in the communities a company serves through product, communication and experience.

MarketingProfs Ann Handley @MarketingProfs – For anyone interested in successful marketing of their business, Marketing Profs is not just a blog to follow, but a necessary tool in your marketing toolbox.  You will find useful reports, statistics and viewpoints from many experts of both genders, but Ann and Beth Kanter are the female voices behind Marketing Profs.

MariaReyesMcDavis.com – Maria Reyes McDavis, @WebSuccessDiva – Maria’s specialty is in developing strategies that help small businesses and Idea Entrepreneurs leverage the power of online technology.  She is an inspiration to many women and men alike and a must read.

Altitude Branding – Amber Aslund @AmberCadabra – Amber is an upbeat breath of fresh air in the social media world.  You’ll find a thought provoking viewpoint that focuses on elevating brands through social media and communication.

IttyBiz – Naomi Dunford, @IttyBiz –   IttyBiz is a place to get tips, advice, motivation, and support for your very small business.  Naomi is a kick in the pants that shares her marketing expertise in a style only she can, loaded with wisdom, wit and an occasional F-bomb.  A fun place to learn.

Diva Marketing Blog, Toby Bloomberg, @TobyDiva – Toby has an accomplishment list a mile long from speaking at major new media conferences to sitting on the board for the American Marketing Association.  On her blog she brings all her experience and offers it to us in a fun and bold voice that’s sure to bring you back for more.

Who have you found to be your top influencers in growing your business and business knowledge? Share your contributions below.

To Your Success,

December 20, 2009   267 Comments

CoBranding, Your Blog, and Respect

Your blog is your business and you’re building a brand that people will associate with you, whether you realize it or not.  One way to help build your brand reputation is to partner up with another brand that’s already established themselves as known figure in a particular industry.  Co-Branding is about sharing each others reputation to say to the public, “Hey, I have these qualities too.  Just look at who I work with”.

In the business world you’ll see  corporations offer sponsorships to athletes or musicians in return for mentions to their multitude of fans about their product.  Together they are both benefiting from the partnership.

In blogging there are similar opportunities out there.  Whatever you call it, what it boils down to is advertising and the advertiser you choose to partner with is a reflection of who you are to your readers. I recently went through an experience with an advertising network that I’d like to share.

My Experience With Forbes Woman Blog Network

When I was contacted by the Forbes Woman Blog Network my first reaction was to be thrilled.  I mean, the name Forbes brings an impression of a professional business woman, so boy…I must be really moving up in blogging world, right?  Or so you would think…

My experience with Forbes has been far less than what I – as a professional – would expect from another.  The original email subject title was a simple “I like your blog” with an invitation to join a new network of professional female bloggers that Forbes Woman was putting together to form a new advertising network.  Each blogger would be in control to approve or reject each ad, Forbes would do all the work of finding advertisers from their base of  Fortune 100 clients, and they would be jumping at the chance to partner with our blogs.  Oh, and of course we would be given the badge of notoriety…a Forbes Woman Blog Network badge to display proudly on our blog.

I took the bait and signed up to find that I was immediately pointed to Adify, an advertising broker where just about anyone can form their own network and sell it to bloggers for a 20% cut of the profits.  This is on top of the cut that your network would take.  FBWN takes 20% to cover the costs of all the “work” they put in so you can sit back and rake in all the advertising money from their clients. If you don’t know anything about Adify or how to work their campaigns, do not expect any help from Forbes.  You’re on your own.  They offer no guidance or tutorials of any kind.  Once I signed up the communication with Forbes became null.  Not the professional set up you would expect from a big name.

My Lesson

I recently read an article that finalized my decision to cut ties with the Forbes Woman Blog Network.  The article was by Marketing & Blogging expert Seth Godin: Catchers and Throwers. He was also contacted by Forbes to be part of the Business and Financial Blog Network.  When Seth emailed the sender he was to receive a little quip that was just as impersonal as the first email.  I love Seth for his ability to point out the obvious…something I’m sure comes with experience.  Seth points out:

You can contact just about anyone you want. The only rule is you need to contact them personally, with respect, and do it months before you need their help! Contact them about them, not about you. Engage. Contribute. Question. Pay attention. Read. Interact.

Partnerships, networks, communities, advertising, co-branding and all collaborations with another entity should be mutually beneficial, but they should also be built on respect.  A spammer doesn’t take the time to ask questions or care about your blog.  Their goal is to sign up as many as possible hoping that one will stick.  Not this one, Forbes.  I just had a lesson in self respect…for my blog and my worth.

When you approach others for a co-branding opportunity do you research what they stand for, have you read their works, commented on their blogs, built a level of communication and respect? Do you know your worth or have you been taken for granted? Leave your comments below to share lessons you’ve learned or how you have formed quality collaborations.

To Your Success,

P.S.~~> Speaking of co-branding and sponsorships…I am headed to Blogworld & New Media Expo in Vegas next month (thanks to John Chow) and I am seeking sponsors that would like to be represented at the expo, on Twitter, and on Market Like A Chick.  See my Sponsor Me page for all the details and feel free to contact me for more info.  I’m thinking a very creative contest would be super fun!
P.P.S. ~~> If you’re going to Blogworld, let’s meet there!  Contact me & let’s work out a place & time to meet up!  If you haven’t registered for the biggest Blogger’s Expo this year, don’t miss out.  Go to HERE for more info, and use BWESEP20 for 20% off registration.

September 28, 2009   5 Comments

Shift Happens – How To Handle Crossroads In Any Woman’s Life With Confidence and Grace

On this Marketing Mindset Monday, today’s post is about change.  It’s about facing circumstances square in the eye and saying “I can handle this and I will expect success to meet me at every step“.  I suppose every one of us has experienced unexpected shifts at what seems to be the most inopportune times.  How will you handle them?

A certain woman I know is currently experiencing undue burden as her employer held pay for 5 weeks.  She’s a single mom with a deadbeat “dad”  that has never done his part to support his children.  I’ve watched her devote countless hours to her job, for many months working 14 hour days including weekends, giving all of herself to help another man  build his business as she was undervalued, passed over and overworked.  While the company flourished, the owners indulged themselves in lavish extravagances, overspending and neglecting their business until nearly at the point of insolvency.  With no money left to spend, the owners have turned back to rebuild and recently informed her they had decided her already small salary was “overpaid” and a portion of her services provided would not be paid for even though it had not been discussed.  To continue working for them she would have to accept a 75%  cut in pay with no benefits.   Knowing that this job is her only source of income to provide for her family, they have her over a barrel.

“Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.” – Mark Twain

There comes a time in every person’s life where there are tough decisions to be made.  A point where you either accept the circumstances as they are or take the responsibility to change them.  Situations like this remind me how important it is to be in business for yourself.  To be responsible for your own profit and put your hard work and sacrifices into building a lasting foundation for yourself and your family.

I love motivational quotes and have l always favored Samuel Langhorne Clemens, also known as Mark Twain for his outspoken personality on human tendencies and witty cut-to-the-chase style.   But, did you also know that Mr. Twain was a strong supporter of women and Women’s Rights?

As a matter of fact, during an address at the Washington Correspondent’s Club, the toast made by Mark Twain was:  “Woman- the pride of any profession, and the jewel of ours”. He also went on to say:

“In all relations of life, sir, it is but a just and graceful tribute to woman to say of her that she is a brick.  Wheresoever you place woman, sir – in whatever position or estate – she is an ornament to the place she occupies, and a treasure to the world.”

How long has it been since you were told you are a treasure to the world or an ornament to the place you occupy in your position?  Women in all professions have accomplished much since the days of Mark Twain, including persisting until the passing of the 19th Amendment.  And we continue to persevere  in the work place even in the face of gender pay discrimination and unscrupulous business practices.

This post is for the women that are ready to make decisions to change their lives.  I’d like to inspire you to remember who you are. You are a gift, a beautiful gift of integrity and strength…compassionate and intelligent. YOU are capable of making any change in your life that you can imagine.  But, that doesn’t mean you have to do it alone.  We must build a strong network of women to support, mentor and encourage one another.    When you have your moments of weakness, I will be here to say, “you are the pride of any profession, a jewel, and you are able!”  When I am struggling with my confidence, you are here to say “Hey Coree…you are an ornament, a treasure to the world, and as strong as a brick”.

“It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.”

I am considering beginning a Mastermind Group for women looking for support and sharing ideas in marketing, new business, pr, advertising, and entrepreneurship.  If I were to do this I would hold conference calls and/or webinars once per week.  I’d like to know how many ladies out there would be interested in joining and possibly co-hosting calls with me.  Please let me know your level of interest by either commenting here or emailing me directly at Coree AT marketlikeachick DOT COM.  I look forward to hearing from each of you!

To Your Success,

PS ~~> One of the BEST ways to build your business is to build your email list!  I will only be offering the 21 day FREE List Marketing MinuteE-Course from expert List Builder, Jimmy D. Brown, for a limited time, so sign up for your free course today.   Jimmy has taught the best, names like John Reese & Nicole Dean, how to master the skill of building a profitable email list. You can sign up here to join the e-course and get started instantly.  You won’t be sorry you did!

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September 7, 2009   3 Comments

Need Startup Help? Listen To Your Fairy Godmother

Do wonderful things only happen to you in fairy tales? Not this time.

Do you have a startup dream?  Starting your own business can be so overwhelming and confusing. Get some one on one time with a REAL Fairy Godmother at The Startup Princess Annual Conference, Touchpoint Sept 11th, 2009 Salt Lake City, Utah! (WAIT!! Don’t sign up yet…scroll down for money saving coupon!!)

Do you ask yourself any of these questions:

  • I want to be my own boss, but where do I begin?
  • I have so many ideas for a new business, but which one is the right one for me?
  • How  do I negotiate the best prices for website design, SEO, or other services?
  • But, I have a family!  How do I balance parenting and business effectively?
  • Do I need to form a corporation, LLC, stay sole proprietor?  What’s the difference?

Kelly King Anderson, founder of Startup Princess, has organized a nationally recognized event for women entrepreneurs with top quality experts (Fairy Godmothers) to teach, counsel and support you in your business dream.  This will be no boring event, but an absolutely life changing chance to learn, network and have a ball with your peers and mentors!

Check this out!

Keynote Speakers & Workshops!! There will be several breakout sessions..check out just a few of the choices:

  • Karmel Larsen, Mrs. Utah United States 2009, Small Business Owner - Discovering and Living Your Life Purpose in Business
  • Ghennipher Weeks, Web and Social Media Consultant - Understanding Web Analytics
  • Heather Bailey, Designer – Developing Products That Sell
  • Carol Rice, Co-Founder of CherishBound – The Power of Negotiation
  • Saren Eyre Loosli, Power of Mom.com, Author – Striving for Balance in Family and Business

Fun & COMPETITION!!

  • Video Marketing Competition – you’re invited to enter and compete to win great prizes..but HURRY, this ends Aug. 30th!!  The Winner will receive a FLIP video camera worth $240 and more! The 5 Finalists will all receive a 1 yr subscription for Mozy back up and a Free Touchpoint Ticket.

There is so much to do and learn I can’t list it all here, but you can be sure your day as a Startup Princess will be the first of many!

Save $10 On Registration

And don’t forget the best part, Kelly has given all the readers of Market Like A Chick a special discount!!   If you use the special code just for my readers, you receive $10 off the already tiny registration fee!  Follow these simple steps to attend YOUR day with top experts & peers:

  1. Register for Touchpoint
  2. Enter Coupon Code:  marketlikeachick
  3. Have a magical and wonderful time being inspired with your Fairy Godmothers

To Your Success,

PS ~~> Leave a comment below if you enter the Video Marketing Competition so we can watch & hopefully help you WIN!!  Be sure to leave the link to your video entry.  For those of you not so brave or technically inclined, be sure to use the coupon code “marketlikeachick” to save $10!!

August 27, 2009   6 Comments

Tribe Loyalty – Supporting Women Owned Businesses

Yes, it’s true.  Women are notorious for sharing in a little behind the scenes gossip, launching a few catty remarks at each other, and even being a little devious at times.  Not that men aren’t…it’s just that chicks are better at it because we make it more interesting.  But, even when we are at the peak of our emotional trashing we have this weird bond.  Women can talk all they want about each other, get our panties all in an uproar, and still vehemently defend our sisters should we find that anyone from the outside is not supporting our tribe.

What does this mean to business and marketing to women?  Let’s look at a few statistics and maybe you’ll catch where I’m going with this:

According to the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council, when women are aware you support women owned businesses:

  • 79% would try your product or service
  • 80% would solidify their brand loyalty
  • 51% would give a company a second chance if a product or service missed the mark the first time

So, yes we do support our tribe.  Maybe it’s because of the fight women have had to take on to finally make our voices heard and respected.  The uphill battle to equality has been nearly accomplished and women are vigilant to make sure we never go backwards.  We have demanded that we be treated equally in business and have proven that our opinions not only matter but affect market trends in a huge way.

Now, right here let me just say…I do not consider myself a big feminist, I don’t go to protests, I don’t participate in lobbying…HOWEVER,  I am a very big advocate for mutual respect whether it be to female, male, child, race, or whatever.  I believe in equality.  Most women that I know are right about at the same place.  We don’t wave a femi-nazi flag shouting injustice.  However, we do support our tribe.

So, you’re thinking…Ok, Coree, so women support each other but there is a great big world of other consumers out there that are also making purchases.  What makes you think that I should care about just one target market?  Hmmm…good question.  Check out a few more statistics:

Women account for 85% of all consumer purchases including everything from autos to health care:

  • 91% of New Homes
  • 66% PCs
  • 92% Vacations
  • 80% Healthcare
  • 65% New Cars
  • 89% Bank Accounts
  • 93% Food
  • 93 % OTC Pharmaceuticals

American women spend about $5 trillion annually… Over half the U.S. GDP

Women make more than 80% of all consumer purchasing decisions.  Consulting firm A.T. Kearney estimates that women determine 80% of consumption, purchase 60% of all cars and own 40% of all stocks (Trendwatching, August 2007)

These are just a few facts that were shared at the Marketing To Women Conference.  You can check out more facts there that may help krazy glue this to your brain:  The female tribe is one to be reckoned with.   Or as I like to say, “Chicks Rule!”

How do you feel about tribe loyalty?  Do you tend to give a brand or company more of your business when you know they support women owned businesses?  As always, thanks for taking the time to read & comment!

Women account for 85% of all consumer purchases including everything from autos to health care:

~ 91% of New Homes
~ 66% PCs
~ 92% Vacations
~ 80% Healthcare
~ 65% New Cars
~ 89% Bank Accounts
~ 93% Food
~ 93 % OTC Pharmaceuticals

To Your Success,

August 25, 2009   3 Comments