Women Will Swap Personal Information for Personal Attention
By Bernice Hurst, Contributing Editor, RetailWire
Some of the 1,800 women participating in a survey by Q Interactive, an Internet marketing firm, may have taken to heart the catch-phrase from a commercial that’s frequently heard on British television – albeit for an American product usually fronted by an American actress – “Because you’re worth it.”
According to the survey, 65 percent of the participants were delighted at receiving targeted online ads, exclaiming “Cool! How did they know I wanted this?” Of those surveyed, 88 percent “wish brands they trust sent them more tailored offers.”
But what they particularly appreciated was receiving gifts to show they are appreciated. To build an online relationship with women, brands need to “give me something” according to 58 percent of women; “get to know me better first” for over 19 percent; and “tell me something valuable” for over 17 percent.
Other findings form the survey:
- Over 53 percent of women believe they have “relationships” with sites and brands they often use online.
- Over 37 percent consider brands they encounter online to be “Good Partners” (send relevant ads women need and use); over 19 percent consider brands they encounter online to be “Straight Shooters” (provide relevant and straightforward information and deals).
Q Interactive’s vice president of marketing and corporate communications, Emily Girolamo, said in a statement, “This report debunks a lot of prior thinking that consumers may fear or question targeted advertising. Women, who are so entrenched online, are creating new expectations of brands, agencies and marketers. They are past any fear or suspicion when they get a targeted ad online — and now just expect, want and seek out brands online with meaning for their busy lives.”
Discussion questions: How open are women to targeted online ads? Are targeted ads more permissible online than other advertising mediums? Do you suspect most women will require marketers to “give me something” before welcoming targeted ads?
[Author commentary] Wondering how brands know what they want may be just a bit disingenuous, especially for consumers who say they appreciate being given things for free. Do they really think that their favorite brands don’t keep track of what they send out? They may or may not be able to track response in terms of purchases but consumers who actively “build relationships” are doing it with their eyes closed if they think those brands aren’t learning everything they can from the interaction. This doesn’t do anything at all for perceptions of women’s intelligence.