Thursday, June 25, 2009

Lesbians and Social Media

According to a recently released Harris Interactive study, lesbians use social networks with greater frequency than gay men or the heterosexual population (note: the study did not separate heterosexual men and women, only providing the combined results.) In a nationwide survey of 3000 US adults, 65% of self identified lesbians were members of Facebook, compared to 50% of gay men and 46% of heterosexuals. Over half (55%) of the gays and lesbians surveyed read blogs, as compared to 38% of heterosexuals. Also, 20% of gays and lesbians use Twitter, as compared to 12% of heterosexuals.

Despite their high level of involvement, there is room left for growth. Although more lesbians than gays are members of social networking sites, more gays (66%) than lesbians (60%) visit social networking sites at least weekly. And both gays and lesbians reported higher levels of dissatisfaction with the ads on social networks than heterosexuals.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

YoQueVos Gives "If I Were You" Advice

While in Argentina, I met with the founder of YoQueVos. YoQueVos (which translates to "If I were you") is an email newsletter in the Daily Candy style targeting young, educated women in the greater Buenos Aires area.

According to their media kit, receiving a YoQueVos update "is like receiving a tip, a piece of advice from a friend who is fun and spontaneous but also educated and aware of the latest trends: She knows about art galleries and this season's shoe trends. Practical and entertaining at the same time, our notes capture the interest and confidence of our readers, using the 'send to your friends' link to promote viral marketing.

And it works. Since their launch in late 2008, YoQueVos has averaged 100 new subcribers per day, amassing a list of over 8000 women in a matter of months. 87% of their subscribers fall into their target market of women between 20 and 35 years old. Clearly, their engaging and informative email updates have garnered the interest of Gen Y PorteƱas. YoQueVos is planning to expand their reach with an website redesign and live events.

Thursday, June 18, 2009


The top woman's magazine Cosmopolitan pushed live their new website redesign today. Among the highlights are more articles, easier access to video content and games, and a greater focus on the community- message boards, user profiles, and Cosmo Confidential, an anonymous question and answer section. Check it out here.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Moms Use the Internet Beyond Parenting Advice

According to recently released eMarketer statistics, over 34 million US mothers go online at least once a month. That number is expected to reach 36.1 million by 2013. And although 45% of online moms use the Internet to shop for their children, they also go online to shop for themselves (44%), plan trips (39%), and research products (49%), among other activities.

“Moms visit parenting and family Websites, but they also regularly view news, weather and political content online,” says eMarketer senior analyst, Debra Aho Williamson. “They shop for their kids—and themselves, and when they find something great for their family, they talk about it, not only with their family and friends, but often with a much broader online audience.”

In the joint Cafe Mom/Razorfish "Digital Mom" report released last February, the mothers surveyed were most likely to have shopped online for clothing and accessories (40%) or food and cooking items (31%). Parenting and baby gear only accounted for 26% of moms' online purchases.

Says Williamson: “Moms constantly seek and share advice, and they are routinely doing so online. Often they simply reach out to family and friends but as more of them use social media such as consumer review sites and blogs, an increasing amount of the information comes from strangers.”

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

StyleFeeder: Personal Shopping Engine

StyleFeeder offers personalized shopping recommendations to over 1.5 million users each month. The site was created for fashion-conscious shoppers interested in hearing about new products. StyleFeeder connects users to emerging trends, not only in the clothing and accessories categories, but also electronics, books, music, even sports and pets. According to InStyle Magazine, “If you just bought the perfect party dress and now need a clutch to match, go to where you can get advice from like-minded buyers.”

The registration process for StyleFeeder is similar to other social shopping sites who offer personalized recommendations. Users sign up, then rate a variety of products on a 5 star scale. Afterwards, users receive a "Style Feed" of suggested items. The Style Feed can be turned into a widget, added to users' Facebook profiles, or simply shared with friends. My StyleFeed included items as disparate as pink, fake fur-lined head phones, Mediterranean patterned bath tiles, and gray sandals with ruffles, all of which I would consider buying. In addition to the Style Feed, users are also matched with "Style Twins" to enhance the product search and discovery process.

StyleFeeder has been lauded for their unique collaborative filtering technology. "The software creates a giant matrix or spreadsheet of items and their relationships. Then it looks for patterns among those who rate items similarly. The basic idea is that if two people like product X and one of them also likes product Y, then they probably both like product Y,” says Women's Wear Daily.

With over 5 million monthly pageviews, a weekly newsletter, and a popular Facebook application, StyeFeeder has successfully carved out a niche in the crowded social shopping space.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Social Media vs. Blogging

eMarketer released results today from their 2009 Social Media Study, which found that "women are turning to all sorts of social media for fun, entertainment, community and connection." According to the study, 75% of women participated in social networking and 55% used (read, posted to, or published) blogs.

The 55% of blog users attributed to nearly 23 million women who read blogs, 12 million who posted to blogs, and 8 million who published their own blogs. “Bloggers represent a highly engaged and influential segment of social media users for brand marketers looking to connect to consumers online,” said Susan Wright, president of Compass Partners.

And the motivations for using for social media and blogs vary. Women who used blogs were more than twice as likely to seek information, advice and recommendations than women who participated in social networking. When providing advice or contributing to a community, more women also turned to blogs than social networks. According to Elisa Camahort Page, COO of BlogHer,“Blogs remain the go-to resource for those who want to gather information, share ideas and get reliable advice.”

Monday, June 1, 2009

Girl Ambition Promotes Tweens' Self Esteem Online

Girl Ambition is the latest in a slew of virtual worlds targeting tween girls. But unlike Est. Today or Disney´s Pixie Hollow, Girl Ambition aims to do more than just entertain tweens. It offers a safe, parent-monitored community that teaches girls Internet safety and promotes self-esteem, philanthropy, and creativity.

Girl Ambition packs a variety of activities for its users. Like their competitors, the site offers games, IM, shopping, and caring for virtual pets. Girl Ambition also provides entertaining, age-appropriate content. They have a magazine and video content, as well as quizzes and craft ideas. Girls are encouraged to submit their own videos and craft ideas, and the sites seamlessly weaves in self-esteem building activities (such as creating a list of people they can depend on) with tips for creating homemade flower cards.

Additionally, there is a robust section for parents (both moms and dads.) The Parents´section offers information on cyber-safety, Internet bullying, self-esteem building activities, and hot tween topics. Parents also have extensive control of their daughters' use of the site, including their buddy list and emails. The site was started by three working moms, so the information for parents is on-target with the questions that many parents of tweens are asking.