Today marks the launch of FleishmanHillard’s Women, Power & Money study – providing insights into the mindsets of women consumers in 2013 and how their decision-making in the marketplace, workplace and home is changing.
Our goal was to explore the differences in how women view themselves and the world across generations, cultures and roles. We work with a number of brands for whom women are a key audience and research like this helps us and our clients develop a greater empathy and understanding of women as individuals, not stereotypes, and take a nuanced approach to engaging with them.
As well as the UK, women in China, France, Germany and the US were surveyed. We found in the five countries studied, as economic anxiety eases, women are becoming more future-focused, shifting priorities and primary concerns from personal finances to longer-term concerns for self, family and business. In the UK women in every generation noted their top concern was ‘the future of [her] children,’ closely followed by some clear indicators of economic angst, ‘[her] household budget’ and ‘keeping [her] job’ – understandable given that 65% feel they are worse off now financially than before the recession started.
We also saw a number of significant differences across the markets, not least in home life, career and shopping habits:
- In Germany, where smart shopping is a way of life, women are highly satisfied as consumers and are feeling relative economic strength. Counterparts in the UK and France are still feeling the economic pinch, while American women’s economic concerns are prevalent but easing.
- Women in the UK are most open to trying new brands and also have a strong desire to help others make smart purchasing decisions.
- French women have the strongest perceptions of gender equality in society and their households, whereas German women note more gender specialisation in the home, but relatively equal opportunity in politics.
- American women prefer spending on ‘experiences’ whereas French women prefer ‘things’ and women in China and Germany expressed the strongest interest in luxury across a variety of categories.
Our release provides more detail on the UK findings, particularly the idea that Gen Y women are the first generation of global consumers with an expectation of gender equality, and a White Paper exploring the research at a global level can be downloaded here.
FH London is also holding an event next week where our branding experts and our research partner Ipsos Mori will explore the research from the point of view of marketing to women, and provide key take-away actions for brands from the findings. Do get in touch if you’d like to attend by emailing WomenPowerMoneyUK@fleishman.com.