Katie Mares: “Women make 85% of all household purchases”
An interview with the author of CustomHER Experience
Did you know that women are the world’s most influential customers, accounting for 43 trillion dollars of worldwide spending?
To learn more about women’s influence and how businesses can make sure they are considering their needs, we spoke to the author of CustomHER Experience, Katie Mares. During our interview, we discussed how the idea for her book came about, why having a female-friendly workplace can drive growth, and what organisations can do to attract female customers.
HI KATIE, PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF AND YOUR ROLE.
Hey! My name is Katie. I am obsessed with helping women realise their true potential through the choices they have and make! I’m also known as brand experience expert, TED talk speaker, and #1 Best Selling Author of CustomHER Experience. But really, my role is to inspire positive actionable change in the women and businesses I interact with!
I’m a mom to three beautiful kiddos that drive me nuts and bring me so much joy all at the same time. I love shoes, fly fishing, and yoga! I show love through cooking and the written word.
CAN YOU SHARE A LITTLE BIT ABOUT HOW YOUR BOOK CUSTOMHER EXPERIENCE CAME ABOUT?
It’s simple (and unfortunate). I had a really awful car buying experience that led me down the rabbit hole of research on the physiological differences between men and women, looking at why she buys versus why he buys.
I visited seven – yes, seven – dealerships to purchase a vehicle and I couldn’t give my money away! Here are some of the lines fed to me by (male) sales associates: Are you old enough to purchase a car? Is your husband here? Do you need your dad’s opinion?
I wish I could tell you I was making that up – but nope, it is the unfortunate reality.
I knew I had to make a difference. And so, I did! CustomHER Experience is the key to captivating the world’s most influential consumer: the woman!
Men and women are physiologically different and that’s ok! The secret to creating an experience she can’t live without is accepting that simple fact and then enhancing the experience you provide to include her wants, needs, and desires.
Writing CustomHER Experience was an obvious choice for me – the world needs to better understand HER so they can better serve HER.
WHY ARE WOMEN ‘THE WORLD’S MOST INFLUENTIAL CUSTOMERS’?
Women influence 43 trillion dollars of worldwide spending. She makes 85% of all household purchases. She’s the chief purchasing officer, chief medical officer, travel agent, and chef, to name a few hats she wears. She decides on where the family banks, buys their cars, and what sports her kids play. She also influences three to four generations of spending. Your future sales funnel is heavily reliant on her. Can you believe that a human being could be that influential to your business’ success?
Women are the decision makers and have been since the beginning of time. They are the original social media and now have a megaphone called the World Wide Web (… and Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, Twitter) where they can spread their opinions about you, your business, and your customer experience.
Did you know that 86% of women use social media for purchasing advice? They are looking to each other for the best product and place to spend their (and their families’) hard earned money!
If you’re not considering HER as a sales funnel, you’re missing out.
HOW DOES HAVING A FEMALE-FRIENDLY WORKPLACE IMPACT THE FEMALE CUSTOMER?
Women want to do business with a business they can see themselves in!
Women need a genuine connection to your business and its people. For them, the journey of the purchase is far more important than the purchase itself. Creating an environment that feels safe and supportive for women helps tell your female consumers that you are a place that she is safe in. She also wants to support organisations that support women!
Creating an environment where women want to work lets her know that she can trust you.
FINALLY, WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO ORGANISATIONS THAT WANT TO BETTER UNDERSTAND THEIR FEMALE CUSTOMERS?
Men are from mars, women are from Venus. We are scientifically different from each other.
My counsel is this: be open to understanding her influence AND then do something about it. Be willing to do differently so you can have a different outcome. Be cognisant of the internal culture you breed and be humble enough to make the message changes so the female consumer can see herself in your business.
Here’s the deal – she wants a connection; he wants the path of least resistance. The experience expectations ARE different. You need to create genuine relationships with your female customers. If she doesn’t believe you care, she will go find someone that does.
It starts with you and an open mind. (Oh, and read CustomHER Experience!)