(Author's note: sorry for no post on Monday - technical problem.)
In Boston, customers are paying $15 for a simple, white, cotton t-shirt. Sure, they could go to Wal-Mart and buy three t-shirts for less, but these shirts are sweatshop-free.
Last week, here in Winston-Salem, the local BMW dealership hosted Drive for the Cure. The public was invited to test drive new BMWs (including the really hot new convertible! I didn’t get to drive that one. But I’m not complaining about taking a 5 series for a spin) and BMW donated a dollar for every mile driven to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation.
These are just two examples of values-based marketing. See, women take a look at all aspects of how you’re doing business. They care about if your company is a good place to work, if you support charitable causes, if you’re a responsible corporate citizen. In fact, studies show that about 75 percent of women will switch brands (if all other variables are equal) if they support a cause she does.
Just a brief aside. I just heard yesterday that values are formed by 3rd grade and that over the course of a lifetime, they don’t change dramatically.
In the case of the $15 t-shirts, a commodity product is building success on the company’s values to add value to the customer. If you can’t strongly differentiate your product, you can still differentiate what your company stands for.
Whether you’re selling a commodity product or not, women are looking at your company and your business practices. Are you ready for the microscope? Have you clearly articulated your company’s values? Are you living them? Women want to know.