The Keys to Great Digital Marketing for Female Entrepreneurs
In general, entrepreneurs vary in what they excel at. Some entrepreneurs may prefer big-picture, creative projects, while others might love digging deep in the minutia of day-to-day responsibilities. Yet, when it comes to categorizing skills belonging to different kinds of entrepreneurs, it seems obvious that female business leaders should be much more proficient at digital marketing than their male counterparts.
Few studies prove conclusively that one gender is better at something than another — and there are good reasons for that. For one, such studies can have serious ramifications on a group that already faces undue challenges in a certain field; it gives the group in power more conviction in excluding the marginalized group even further. Yet, digital marketing is a field where the marginalized group, i.e. women, can and should see overwhelming success because it relies on skills and attitudes that women tend to develop over the course of their business careers.
In the realm of digital marketing, women have a fair shot at earning acclaim — and here’s why.
Digital Marketing Requires Creativity
Most elements of entrepreneurship require some creativity — the ability to innovate products, services, strategies, etc. — but marketing is the most creative field by far. A business’s branding must be unique and trendy as well as authentic and memorable; it needs to communicate a business’s core values as well as its products and services. Digital marketing especially, because of its newness and vastness, demands that business leaders utilize creativity in developing content and promoting it in interesting and enticing ways.
Hundreds of studies over the course of centuries have striven to determine whether men or women are more creative. For much of history, women were perceived as less creative than men — but emerging research indicates that isn’t the case. Because women encounter more resistance in their attempts at success in fields like entrepreneurship, they are forced to develop greater creativity to circumvent obstacles in their way. Thus, women have the opportunity to truly excel in a field like digital marketing, where the benefits from creativity are immense.
One of the best examples of a woman exercising creativity in digital marketing is Ann Handley, who is currently the Chief Content Officer for Marketing Profs. Handley pushes for innovation in marketing, and much of her content is centered on getting businesses to try new, creative strategies for increasing visibility and engagement.
Melanie Deziel is also a big-name digital marketer who should inspire female entrepreneurs to get more creative with their brand stories. The founder of StoryFuel, Deziel encourages marketers to think like journalists in how they create narratives and engage audiences.
Digital Marketing Requires Self-assessment
Sometimes, an innovative idea just doesn’t work. Being creative doesn’t guarantee success; entrepreneurs need to be able to recognize when a method is achieving desired results and when that method is wasting resources. In a field like digital marketing, leaders need to monitor relevant data and make assessments about whether their prior decisions are paying off.
Fortunately for female entrepreneurs, women have a slight advantage in this arena. In general, women are a bit more self-aware than men, and this self-awareness is helpful first for relating to their staff and second for encouraging consistent assessment of their decisions and their strategies. In digital marketing, which sometimes requires swift pivoting, frequent self-assessment like this is key.
Though analytics is often seen as a technical field based in masculine hard skills, several female marketers have demonstrated that assessing marketing success with data is a must. Some names female entrepreneurs might want to follow on social media include Annie Cushing and Michelle Kim, both of whom recognize the power of using data to guide marketing decisions.
Digital Marketing Requires Reliability
Digital marketing is incredibly accessible to all levels of entrepreneurs, from first-time startup launchers to business leaders on their fifth successful venture, because digital marketing is so customizable to different budgets, different goals and different brands. Yet, regardless of an entrepreneur’s digital marketing strategy, they always need one thing: reliability.
Digital marketing is most successful when it adheres to a cohesive style and predictable pattern. This is equally true for more technical aspects of digital marketing, like SEO, as it is for more creative marketing endeavors. Studies indicate that women naturally prioritize reliability over other features, which means female entrepreneurs should identify quality link building services, content creators and other marketing contractors that they can commit to long-term.
Digital Marketing Requires Patience
Few business processes show results in a day or even a week. Even so, digital marketing has a particularly long timeline, demanding months and sometimes years to manifest desired outcomes. This is largely due to the nature of the web: It takes time for online audiences to find, share and appreciate digital marketing endeavors. Content that goes viral quickly also tends to fade quickly without providing long-term benefits, so a slow and steady climb is all but mandatory.
Research into patience across genders has largely found that women demonstrate better control of their emotions and expectations than men do — meaning men are much more impatient and more likely to give up or change tactics sooner than women. This can be disastrous in digital marketing, where one must give certain techniques time to work their magic.
In terms of both patience and reliability, there is no better female icon in digital marketing than Clare McDermott. With over 20 years of experience in the field, McDermott has cultivated a wealth of knowledge on successful strategies for marketing — most of which include conducting original research and applying insights over time.
The truth is that female entrepreneurs aren’t all that different from male entrepreneurs — except for the challenges they face. Women in business tend to be more assertive and more passionate than men to prove that they are fit for success in their industry. As a result, women have greater opportunity to hone skills associated with success across business fields — and in digital marketing, in particular. The more females entrepreneurs harness the skills and insights gained through their unique experiences as women in a male-dominated field, the more success they will find, and the less women will have to work to prove their digital marketing chops.