I've noticed a trend recently. Many of the companies doing the best job of marketing to women are.....show me your shocked face....run by women.
Case in point - ConsumerBell. ConsumerBell provides a fast and organized way for companies to communicate product recall information to save time, reduce costs, and disseminate information broadly.
Consumer Bell was founded by Ellie Cachette. She is also the CEO.
This company is doing so many things right I hardly know where to start. Let's take a look at why this young company is already so successful and what you can learn from their success.
Lesson #1 - Have a core brand that your audience can relate to.
On their About Us page they sum up the core of the brand -
At the core of ConsumerBell is a team of inspired and dedicated consumers and parents. We're making it easier for you to get the information you need. Get to know the women and men who make it all happen.
This doesn't feel like a corporate or legal site. This is a site with real people, and even better, real parents. Many of the companies ConsumerBell works with create products for families and kids.
Lesson #2 - Don't just talk about what you do, talk about why you do it.
Ellie also has a very personal reason for starting the company. This is where women company founders can win. There is nothing more inspiring than a woman who follows her passion for creating a better world.
If you are a woman business owner, share your story. It's a great way to build trust and a key differentiator between you and your competition. Which brings me to our next lesson.
Lesson #3 - Clearly state how you are different/better than your competition.
This sounds like a no-brainer, but I see very few companies who do a good job with this.
ConsumerBell has a clear differentiator. Here they tell you clearly what they do, and how they are different from other options:
ConsumerBell provides a fast and organized way for companies to communicate product recall information to save time, reduce costs, and disseminate information broadly.
Unlike traditional means of media advertisements, we offer a mutually-beneficial solution to both consumers and companies that is faster and cheaper.
Most companies are either on the side of the consumer, or of the company. ConsumerBell meets the needs of both. Consumers need fast easy access to product recall information. Companies need a fast easy way to get that information to consumers, they need that information to come from a trusted source, AND they need to provide consumers with a simple, easy way to take action. ConsumerBell makes all of this happen in one location. Their competitors don't.
Lesson #4 - Control the customer experience
This can be especially tricky if you have a service delivery partner. For example, there was a consumer product company working with a financial company. The idea was that a customer would go to the consumer product website, learn about the savings account they could set up, then go to the financial company to actually set up the account.
The experience on the consumer product company website was great, But as soon as the visitor landed on the account set up page on the financial company website, the experience was just awful.
ConsumerBell has a solution to this problem. On the specific product recall page, the company can populate fields with all the product recall information, but the template design of the page is still controlled by ConsumerBell.
Lesson #5 - Create a woman-friendly website
ConsumerBell has one of the best home page designs I've ever seen. Many visitors are basically using the site as a search engine for product recall information.
The two other choices are - Browse if you don't know exactly what you're looking for, and Stay informed if you want to sign up for product recall alerts.
The only other link in the active window on the page is to the ConsumerBell blog. (Obviously, the company would like to send traffic to their blog)
No clutter, clear navigation choices right in the active window of the page, and terrific use of white space.
For those who want more information, they can click on the How It Works navigation tab.
Lesson #6 - Make it easy for clients/customers to do business with you
One of the reasons women-run companies do so well is because women are always looking for win-win situations.
ConsumerBell has created a win for customers. Many product recall pages on manufacturers websites are complicated and time consuming. On the ConsumerBell site,
"Within minutes, our three easy steps allow you to submit your recalled product for a repair kit, credit, or refund. We're making safety easier for you and your family."
It's a win for companies and manufactures of recalled products.
"Add your recalled product to our social platform to engage customers and vendors while easily tracking the recall process in real-time."
ConsumerBell spreads the word through their site, social media, and partnerships with over 12 mom blog networks. But companies are only charged when a customer hits "redeem" and a refund or credit is issued. It's a pay per transaction model, so the company is only charged when a customer takes the specific action the company wants them to take. It's an incredibly simple, measurable, performance based business model that companies love.
Lesson #7 - Don't just target a community, join the community.
Ellie Cachette and her team are incredibly involved in the community they serve. ConsumerBell has over 50 domains and Twitter accounts. Ellie herself is famous among mom blog circles. Here's a business owner who doesn't sit in a corner office and read about her customers, she interacts with them every day.
For these reasons and many more, you're going to continue to see more women founding and running successful start-ups.
For a tellin it like it is look at what it's like to be a female start-up CEO, read Elllie's article - So you want to date a female Start-Up CEO? Get in line. She's busy.