With International Women’s Day and Mother’s Day occurring within the last week or so now is probably the time to discuss gender issues in email marketing. The differences between men and women would appear to run deeper than most of us realise. When planning a marketing email it doesn’t matter whether this is through nature or nurture. We have to work with what is presented to us and pay attention to the content of our marketing emails.
After buying a book surplus to requirements from my library I was told that the alarm would sound as I left because their anti-theft software could not cope with purchases. As I walked out between the sensor panels there were a number of people walking towards me. When the alarm sounded I did what many other men would have done in my place; broke into a run.
My wife was angry with me and brought this up at a barbecue with friends, asking for opinions as to my conduct. These were split 50:50 along gender lines. This generated a discussion where neither side could sway the other.
Accepting that women and men differ is just the start of a process for us. For instance, according to fairly recent statistics, women buy more frequently than men from marketing emails and pay more attention to the From Line. The differences are statistically significant. So if you are not segmenting your emails along gender lines, at least early on, then your returns are likely to be lower than they might be.
Much will depend on your product, but you probably segment your email marketing lists for some campaigns and not others. Various items might well be specific for women but they might be bought by the user or, to make matters complicated, for her but by somebody of either gender.
Research suggests that women pay more attention to brands, in order, the suggestion is, to boast non-verbally to friends. Whilst the interpretation is rather patronising, the basic fact remains and we should try to exploit this difference.
There is much research available online with regards female preferences. There is much argument about whether women prefer the colour pink. Many say they do not, but some suggest this is because a pink email suggests to women that the sender is patronising them.
Experiment with segmenting your list on gender lines and then splitting them again testing such things as, for instance, times of sending. Women, it seems, tend to open emails at a different time, but this might be because women generally are more likely to work part time and to work at home. You need to discover which of your subscribers do this.
What is the best sending time for women is not the best sending time for all women. The research is an indication. The next thing to do is to find other matters the women who opened at a specific time have in common. You can then define those you will put in a segmented email marketing list for sending time.
All other women will go back into the pool.
In addition, you might well discover that certain men share common identifiers with women in the timing group. You should now test them to see if they respond better when in the same list.