Brands getting in line with women, online

Brands getting in line with women, online

Until recently, few women’s brands were dipping their toes into online advertising. Odd, given that women influence 80% of all consumer purchases made in North America. Weren’t we gals online, too? At last, it seems that brands are catching up to our reality.

This week, FanTrust tracks a surge of fun, quality women’s content and relevant brand messaging proliferating the web. And we’ve got the numbers to prove it. A recent New York Times article, “Woman to Woman, Online”, reported that

Sites aimed primarily at women, from “mommy blogs” to makeup and fashion sites, grew 35 percent last year — faster than every other category on the Web except politics, according to comScore, an Internet traffic measurement company. Women’s sites had 84 million visitors in July, 27 percent more than the same month last year, comScore said.

Staggering growth, to say the least.

Almost overnight, Glam Media, a network of 650 women’s sites, has become an online media darling with media buyers and investors alike, drawing more visitors than its rivals and raising $114 million from backers to date.

Brands are getting into the game – big time. Beyond banner advertising, many brands are working directly with women’s sites to create sponsored content. Glam Media, which promotes its “custom content creation” to advertisers, recently wrote a quiz to promote Wal Mart’s new steak selection. “What’s Your Steak Style?” promised to help readers determine whether her “palate personality” is casual, healthy, decadent or gourmet.

Here in Canada, brands and online destinations are also getting into the action. In late spring, Canoe announced that it hoped to have 400 web series (English and French) with product placement and brand integration online by the end of 2008. Canoe is working with agencies and producers on a variety of concepts – but seem to have found a viable niche with cooking and home décor.

Other growth areas we’ve been tracking in women’s online content:

Professional online video

    A study in February 2008 found that twice as many women as men watched professional content online; while men were twice as likely as women to watch user generated content online.


      In the New York Times article, the chief executive on a women’s website suggested “Women love to reach out and talk”. But women also like to laugh – and laugh they do, watching online series like The Jeannie Tate Show (video below), about a soccer mom who hosts a talk show live from her minivan, and Imaginary Bitches, about a single gal with some naughty imaginary friends. Seems women are funny, Vanity Fair.

      Please enter the url to a YouTube video.


        MIT’s OpenCourseWare lets both genders take any and all MIT classes online for free, including Women’s Studies. For lighter fare, women are going online for tips and tricks to make our day-to-day lives richer, easier, less stressful, more fulfilling and stylish. Check out the bite-sized cooking, shopping, fashion and money tips served up on’s video player, from its well-spring of lifestyle programming; to the extensive online video workshops centred around career and spirituality on