“A great brand taps into emotions. Emotions drive most, if not all, of our decisions. A brand reaches out with a powerful connecting experience. It’s an emotional connecting point that transcends the product.” ~ Scott Bedbury/Nike, Starbucks
Hello SOTGC community,
Making the public aware of your company is the most important component to building your brand. Once you have identified your target customer you’re ready to put yourself out there for the world to see. When you think of your ideal customer who comes to mind? If your ideal customers are women and men, then you have to ask, “who is my brand talking to?” If your brand only speaks to women, you’re thinking too small. When targeting a specific market, be sure your branding is not excluding an entire group from working with you.
Many women entrepreneurs lose out on revenue due to the mixed signal of their branding. Men don’t “see” or “hear” your marketing simply because you aren’t talking to them. As a female entrepreneur, your branding strategies naturally lean towards your feminine side. However, the influence of your brand should not be underrated. Don’t let your gender trick you out of potential male customers who are confused by your brand. Your ability to reach a broad audience, and to continually reinforce that choosing your company was the right decision, will ultimately determine your business’ success.
Marketing to Men 101:
Men tend to make decisions more quickly than women. Men are not browsers. Men shop with a motto “get what I want and move on.” Men tend to dislike ensembles and look for a single perfect fit that supplies specific results.
- Keep your brand message quick and to the point
- Describe your services in short sentences using key words
- Speak with urgency in your marketing to appeal to a man’s “right now” mind
Men have a black and white awareness to things. It’s either this or that. Women have an “it depends” type of awareness and are interested in the variation of a service.
- Offer your services in packages and individually
- Clearly state what makes you better than others (i.e. what results he will get)
- Give clear instructions on what actions to take (click here, buy now etc.)
Your marketing will not be very effective if you do not have a strong brand. If your brand only speaks to a small portion of potential customers, your marketing will also be less profitable. Take the time to listen and understand what your male customers are looking for. Look for ways to embrace men so that they are genuinely interested in working with you. If your company offers services that both women and men can use, your brand must be neutral enough to appeal to both. You cannot market to men the same way you market to women. Men and women are different biologically, psychologically, and socially.
Neutralize Your Brand:
Remember a business card is designed as a way for potential customers to follow up with someone about a service that person is interested in. Your business card should represent your business, not you. Do not use colors or pictures that say, “I’m a woman.” A standard card with your business name and information will do just fine. Be careful to choose neutral colors that represent your business and that men won’t have a complex about carrying.
Company Name, Slogan, and Logo:
Choose a name and slogan that best represents what your services are without speaking to a specific gender. Again, you may want to consult with professionals who can help keep your brand neutral. Choose a logo that will visually clarify your business, not you. Hire someone to create a logo for you. This way there will be no personal influence.
Pay close attention to your About page. Yes, you still need to include all the basics, but a few simple tricks can make your About page a more neutral read that attracts both women and men to your company. Focus on your business’ services and how it will benefit them. Provide a snapshot of your work history and experience, but limit personal information such as hobbies, personal likes, or things that highlight your gender. Again, keep the overall appearance interesting enough to catch your visitor’s attention, but neutral enough to keep potential male customers interested in working with you.
Branding is the meat of your marketing plan. It is what will make your business stand apart from competitors. To be successful it is important that you find ways to speak to all of your potential clients. Be consistent with your message, and it will not be “you” but “the company” your males customers see.