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Keynote - How to Ensure You Are Not Alienating Half the Population24:06 with Belinda Parmar
Belinda will explore how to avoid clichés and market successfully to women, detailing 3 and half years of research with inspirational examples of what women want from technology and how most brands are failing to deliver this.
[MUSIC]. 0:00 Thank you so much. 0:10 It's great to be here, and on the last 0:11 session, you're still here, so I feel very honored. 0:13 Thank you very much. 0:16 About three and a half years ago. 0:18 I walked into a mobile phone store, and the guy 0:21 who was serving me was about 15 years younger than me. 0:24 I told him I wanted to buy a smartphone. 0:30 And he started to speak to me very slowly. 0:34 And then to add insult to injury, he took me to the pink phone. 0:38 At the time was a, a low spec Motorola. 0:44 And, he, didn't know that I did actually know the difference between ROM and RAM. 0:48 And he failed to take me seriously. 0:55 And, he also made a set of assumptions about me. 0:59 Number one, that I knew nothing about technology. 1:02 Secondly, that I didn't have money to 1:07 spend, when actually, I pay half my mortgage. 1:09 I have two kids and I do know a bit about technology. 1:15 And I was working for an agency at the time. 1:21 And we did some research. 1:23 And what we found was a third of all British women felt alienated 1:25 and patronized by the way technology companies speak to them. 1:31 And what we are campaigning for, is to end what 1:39 we've trademarked which is, the pink it and shrink it approach. 1:42 Take last years device for men, pink it, shrink it, add a few diamonds. 1:47 Maybe create a kids and corner in the sharp. 1:52 And then job done. 1:56 You've got the female audience. 1:58 And, and actually what is apparent particularly in the 2:01 technology industry and as a campaigning agency, we started out 2:05 in consumer electronics, and now we are also in 2:10 the car industry, and also looking at the finance industry. 2:14 And, but what we found is that there is a lack of empathy. 2:19 And that cuts across, from the new product development right 2:23 through the marketing, the advertising, and the selling to women. 2:27 So the lack of empathy, we describe empathy as three things. 2:32 What's underneath empathy? 2:36 The first thing is, in order to sell or develop products 2:39 for women, you've got to deliver these three things as a company. 2:43 The first one is emotion. 2:47 The second one is reassurance. 2:49 And the third one is authenticity. 2:51 An emotion, make me feel something. 2:55 Make me laugh, make me cry, but I want to be moved. 2:58 The second thing is reassurance. 3:02 And actually if you take one message out of today, 80% of women want to 3:04 be reassured that they've bought the right 3:11 technical product, compared to only 12% of men. 3:14 So reassurance is incredibly important, and one of 3:19 the most fundamental things when speaking to women. 3:23 And the last one is authenticity. 3:27 So show me you mean it. 3:32 I mean as someone with children. 3:34 As I've got older, I have got even more cynical at big 3:36 brown campaigns that, you know, promise the world, but don't deliver anything. 3:40 So, authenticity I think a lot of the marketing 3:46 to women is actually a complete waste of money. 3:49 So, our view is, you know, the more 3:54 empathic your marketing messages are, the more women 3:56 will want to listen to you, and that 3:59 goes for the culture and the buying experience, too. 4:00 And this isn't a feminist agenda, and it's great to 4:03 see so many men here because actually, it's a commercial agenda. 4:09 In the UK, that missed financial opportunity is in the 4:13 technology industry alone is worth 0.6 billion Pounds. 4:20 Some of the things we're doing at the moment for our clients. 4:27 So Bank of America we worked with 4:31 little [UNKNOWN] which is our social enterprise and 4:33 as Simon said, that is about inspiring 4:35 the next generation of women to become technologists. 4:38 We want the next Mark Zuckerberg to be female. 4:43 So, we are running after school tech clubs 4:46 in inner cities, State schools, to inspire girls. 4:48 To want to code, to want to create technology, not just consume it. 4:52 Other things we're doing at the moment is Nissan. 4:58 We are looking at transforming the dealership. 5:01 I don't know about you, but buying a car is often 5:04 a really, you know, dreadful experience for both men and women. 5:08 But actually talking to the car companies, they're 5:12 almost ten years behind the technology companies in 5:15 terms of understanding what is it that women want, and how do we want to feel? 5:19 How do we wanna buy things, and what kind of 5:24 cars and products do we want companies to develop for us? 5:26 And Samsung is one of our biggest clients, and we're looking at the Westfield 5:31 store the Samsung Westfield store and how we make that more appealing to women. 5:36 So what I'd like to do in the next ten minutes is just share 5:42 some of the myths around speaking to women and hopefully get lots of questions. 5:45 So that we can end the day with a heated debate. 5:51 [BLANK_AUDIO]. 5:55 I would argue, that speaking to women, has 6:01 not changed that much since the 1970s. 6:07 Apart from we don't use the word idiot. 6:13 Whoa. 6:16 These are just some things, that we have at the moment. 6:18 So I don't know if you've seen the new Citron car ad. 6:24 But nail your look. 6:28 Now, I don't know many women are gonna buy a car. 6:31 Because it has a pink roof. 6:34 But, even if they do, advertising a 20 grand car with a $299 Lipst [UNKNOWN] 6:36 varnish, I don't think is the best strategy to appeal to women. 6:42 Again, now your look, clichés, assumptions. 6:48 And, this campaign, did you see this campaign by Coding? 6:52 This ad was posted this week and it says, we know exactly what you need a 6:56 terminal with root access and 36 gig of free space in the cloud and a girlfriend. 7:04 You know, it's just like, is that really how 7:12 you're trying to get more women in the industry. 7:15 You know, we know that 17% of the technology workforce is 7:18 female, but the tragedy is it's going down each year by 0.5%. 7:23 Which means if we continue at the same rate by 7:29 2040, our technology workforce will be less than 1% female. 7:33 These kind of ads don't help. 7:40 And, and then the Barclay's ad which is actually 7:41 quite funny which I'm going to show you, again 7:45 just shows Barclays not really thinking about the role 7:48 of women, and how to bring women into their brand. 7:52 [BLANK_AUDIO]. 7:55 Can we show this? 7:57 >> There is no greater test of 8:00 unconditional love than the act of having children. 8:02 Because from the moment those tiny little parasitic bundles of joy enter your 8:07 world, they spend the next 20-odd years laying claim to everything in it. 8:12 They want this, they need that, and if you don't give 8:18 it to them, well obviously it's because you don't love them enough. 8:24 But at some point you have to start looking after your own interests. 8:30 [MUSIC]. 8:33 At Barclay's, we've created a family springboard mortgage. 8:35 You can put your savings towards your loved one's mortgage, 8:39 but you'll get your money back, with interest after three years. 8:41 Because what goes around, should always come around. 8:47 [MUSIC]. 8:51 For all of life's little challenges, you can always count on your bank. 8:53 >> So, not the worst ad. 8:58 But again, you know, oh, could we go back to the presentation? 9:00 [BLANK_AUDIO]. 9:04 Not the worst ad. 9:09 But again, symbolic of a brand showing what it values. 9:11 And alienating its audience. 9:15 It's had a really bad reaction on social media. 9:17 I don't know if you've seen this from last week. 9:21 This is a new website Hot Tech Today. 9:24 What 9:27 do I need to say? 9:30 I mean, you know, 50% of smartphones were bought by women in 2010. 9:32 More women play casual games than men now. 9:40 And guess, guess who's driving the growth on social media? 9:46 Anyone? 9:51 Women. 9:52 62% of Twitter now is female. 9:54 The fastest growing segment on Facebook is women over 55. 9:59 Now this is actually off-putting to some men. 10:03 Maybe some here [LAUGH]. 10:08 But the thing about a lot of these female 10:10 orientated initiatives or very male orientated initiatives is they alienate. 10:13 And the title of this talk was how not to alienate half your population. 10:20 But there's also the other point with actually 10:25 you don't wanna speak to women and alienate men. 10:28 And brands that are really successful, I wanna share with you some brands. 10:31 But before we do that. 10:36 I wanted to talk about where does this all start? 10:37 You know, where does this gender, how much of 10:40 it is nature, how much of it is nurture? 10:42 Well one of the professors we work with is Professor Baron-Cohen. 10:45 And he talks about there being two different 10:50 types of brain type, the empathizer and the systemizer. 10:53 And the systemizer understands the world through logic and analysis and, 10:58 works very well within a system, which if you think about 11:03 companies today, they are particularly male orientated companies, 11:07 they are a system and, it's very clear if I do this, this will happen. 11:12 So there's an input and there's an output. 11:17 An empathizer, on the other hand, is somebody 11:21 who can respond appropriately to someone else's emotion. 11:23 Now, we as men and women statistically, on average, more women fall 11:30 into the empathizer mode, and more men fall into the systemizer mode. 11:36 Now actually he's not saying that one is better than the other. 11:42 All he's say. 11:46 And we can train ourselves, so if we are extreme systemizers. 11:47 So an extreme systemizer would be the autistic brain. 11:52 We can train ourselves to become more empathetic. 11:56 And the same if we are the empathizer brain, 11:59 we can actually, actually systemize the way we use language. 12:02 So the point is, is understanding who you are. 12:06 And I recommend that everyone in this room take the Simon Baron-Cohen test 12:09 to find out where you fit on the spectrum of systemizes to empathizes. 12:14 Now, you might all think, oh, this is just, you know, rubbish. 12:20 And, and I, I did, I did, actually. 12:25 And then I had two children. 12:28 And I've got an older boy, who's seven, and a girl as well, who's six. 12:30 And I saw how completely different in how their brains were 12:36 wired, and what they need from me and how to motivate them. 12:41 And, Professor Baron-Cohen has done research with a one day old baby 12:44 girl, and a, with one day old baby girls and one day old baby boys. 12:50 And a baby girl is significantly more likely to look at a human face. 12:56 And a one day old baby boy is significantly 13:03 likely, more likely to look at a mechanical object. 13:05 And he's spent his whole life researching this. 13:09 Now the point is, neither are better, but it is important to 13:13 understand where you fit in, and also what type of organization you've got. 13:17 So, I just wanna finish by going through some myths. 13:24 What are some of the myths? 13:28 What are some practical things that you could start thinking 13:28 about when you're designing or developing products or communications for women? 13:31 The first is that women are the 13:38 empathizer, because it isn't always about gender. 13:40 What choice? 13:44 Choice of color. 13:45 Choice of models. 13:46 Choice of apps. 13:47 The reality is that many women feel overwhelmed by the choice out there. 13:48 I don't know if you're familiar with Dan O'Reilly, but 13:54 he's done a lot of work into the paralysis of choice. 13:57 And if you have nine jams you won't buy any. 14:01 If you have six jams the percentage of buying goes up. 14:04 And again when you get to three. 14:07 And when you look at the technology, oh, and this is 14:09 about offering reassurance that came in somewhere I didn't expect it. 14:12 But anyway, [LAUGH], mm that's an even worse statement. 14:16 But anyway, the point here is back to reassurance, and I think Android 14:19 had, Android is an interesting one because it did have a dude problem. 14:25 And it still has a dude problem. 14:31 And we approached Google when we first started Lady Geek and said. 14:32 You know we'd love to do some work with you, 14:37 we'd love to get more women into Android and Nexus. 14:39 And they said, you know, we don't need Lady Geek. 14:42 We'll build it. 14:46 Women will come. 14:47 Don't worry about us. 14:48 And then, you know, three years on Nexus 5, look at the sales, predominantly male. 14:50 It's about 70% split. 14:56 Same with Google Plus. 14:58 You know, actually you've gotta address these things. 15:01 But this was the point I was making about choice. 15:06 And, if you look at the telecoms industry, we work a lot with the telecoms industry. 15:10 There are 150 different options in a brochure for mobile network, tariffs. 15:16 Now, most men don't want that either, but the point is 15:25 if you're a systemizer you will work your way round this system. 15:29 But for, if you're an empathizer these numbers mean nothing to you. 15:34 A lot of empathizers do not know what kind 15:38 of minutes, what tariff, and quite frankly don't care. 15:41 So, this works for the systemizer. 15:45 The other point is by targeting women you alienate men, and that is wrong. 15:50 Empathy is relevant to both men and women, 15:55 and it's really interesting when you look at brands 15:58 like John Lewis and brands like Portray Monjay 16:01 who have empathy at the core of their offering. 16:04 And they don't overtly speak to women, but John Lewis' 16:08 technical department is biased in terms of their buyers, i.e., 16:11 consumers, is 40% female. 16:16 Which is much higher than your average retailer, technology retailer. 16:18 And Stephen Taylor who's the chief marketing officer of 16:25 Samsung, you know he said, Blokes want empathy too. 16:28 We just aren't as vociferous about saying, you're talking to me in the wrong way. 16:32 So learning about empathy will influence how we speak to woman. 16:37 And we found this with Telefonica, if you go into the 16:41 Berlin O2 flagship store, we have trained all the staff, on empathy. 16:45 And we've actually increased customer, customer satisfaction 16:50 by 6% in six weeks amongst men and women, as well. 16:56 This was interesting in terms of bringing empathy to social media. 17:02 Simon mentioned we've worked for Vodacom in South Africa, and we met all 17:07 these amazing women who were incredibly 17:12 inspiring in the fashion industry, very smart. 17:15 And they talked to us about Standard Bank. 17:18 And Standard Bank is the number one bank, 17:21 one of the number one banks in South Africa. 17:23 And they kept saying to us, Standard Bank 17:26 is fantastic because RB Jacobs, oh, he's great. 17:29 You know, I post something on Twitter and he gets back to me. 17:33 We keep hearing, and we're like, who is R.B. Jacobs? 17:37 And anyway, we said to a lot of these 17:42 smart women, you do realize that, he probably doesn't exist. 17:44 Or there's a team of people who are R.B. Jacobs. 17:48 And they'd be like, no, it's R.B. Jacobs. 17:52 So something as simple as humanizing a Twitter 17:55 feed, which you may say sounds ridiculously obvious. 17:58 And a lot of these empathy strategies are obvious, but they're not happening. 18:03 Some of the brands that are really doing well and delivering empathy. 18:09 I really love the Marks and Spencer's leading ladies campaign. 18:14 It shows you what they believe is the company as a company. 18:18 They're celebrating women's achievements and they've used people like Roma, 18:21 who's the engineer for the Shard, as well as Emma Thompson. 18:25 So a real mix of authentic women as well. 18:28 I also love Net-a-Porter. 18:33 Anyone here buy from Net-a-Porter? 18:35 Some ladies at the front. 18:39 And what they did was something really simple. 18:40 So, Net-a-Porter's quite expensive a lot of working women buy from Net-a-Porter. 18:43 But, what they didn't want, was for everybody to 18:50 know a work that they've spent lots of money. 18:53 So what they did, was they have a discrete packaging, which 18:58 comes in a brown bag, and they have the signature packaging. 19:03 And you can actually say, which one you prefer. 19:07 And it's a really simple thing, but it's made a big difference. 19:11 And it shows women that actually, you get it, 19:14 as a brand you get it, you understand them. 19:17 Also, the new bio watch, the new smart watch is 19:20 just got its, all the money it needed on Kickstarter. 19:25 But again, when women are developing smart watches, 19:29 one of the things its got, is it let's, 19:32 it's got enabled GPS, and it let's somebody 19:34 know if your on a run, that you're safe. 19:37 So if you're going to running, or swimming or whatever. 19:39 So there's a security element to that smart watch. 19:42 Now, you know, Pebble Samsung, their all obsessed with smart watching, 19:45 but actual what smart watches, but when you get women creating technology. 19:50 You end up in a different place, as the two founders of Bia have shown us. 19:55 A mini, 53% women now, really playful and exciting element, their brand. 19:59 And what's really interesting with the data we just looked at is that women 20:07 are prepared to spend more on a mini than they are any other car. 20:11 It's partly because of the extras that you buy. 20:16 But also there's that aspiration you know, women are prepared to pay 20:18 more for products and brands that they feel deliver empathy to them. 20:22 The Burberry Kisses Campaign, something we did in Teilafonica, Germany. 20:28 Just again, by writing the name of the person on the business card. 20:32 Really simple, really obvious idea, makes it big difference to 20:37 women walking away feeling, that they've had an empathic experience. 20:40 And I wanted to finish by showing you, this 20:46 ad, which I think is a brilliant example of authenticity. 20:49 [BLANK_AUDIO]. 20:53 You've probably might have seen it already. 21:00 [SOUND]. 21:01 Such a great example of authenticity. 22:54 GoPro giving firemen, you know, a camera. 22:57 Whether this was staged or not, I don't know. 23:00 But the fact is it feels incredibly authentic, 23:03 incredibly empathic and had over 20 million views. 23:06 So a brilliant example of empathy there. 23:09 Just want to finish presentation. 23:12 And if you could go back 23:15 [BLANK_AUDIO]. 23:16 That's our process; I'm not gonna go through that. 23:21 Just to finish by saying, it's not about feminizing. 23:24 It's about demasculinizing. 23:29 And what we'd really love you to do is Tweet and tell us, one thing that you 23:33 think organizations could do in terms of their products, 23:38 or their marketing, and advertising to show more empathy. 23:43 So, if you could Tweet @ladygeek, that would be brilliant. 23:47 I'm hoping for lots of provocative questions. 23:52 We've got a bit of time left. 23:57 But thank you very much. 23:58 [SOUND] 24:00
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