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Technology is changing the social norms of women globally

Nurdianah Md Nur | Nov. 22, 2013
By understanding the new social norms, marketers can craft digital marketing campaigns that will better reach out to wired women.

Connected technology is creating new social norms of women all over the world, according to a joint report by MSLGROUP and Dot Complicated.

The report, titled "The Social Wisdom of Wired Women around the World", explores the evolving relationship between technology and women in the U.S., Brazil, the U.K. and urban China.

The study revealed that women in urban China preferred mobile technology to manage key tasks more than women elsewhere. An overwhelming 91 percent of wired urban Chinese women own smartphones, marking a 20 percentage point gap over all the other markets combined. Sixty-eight percent of these wired urban Chinese women also preferred to pay their bills via their smartphones or tablets. This is in contrast with wired women in the rest of the world who preferred to use their computers to pay their bills online.

The use of social media is popular with wired urban Chinese women too. In China, over 70 percent of the women rely on social media to keep abreast of current affairs, as compared to only 46 percent of women surveyed around the globe. Almost half of the Chinese women studied also claimed to spend at least eight hours a week on social media sites.

Another key finding from the report is that wired women usually turn to social and digital media to source information on goods and services. However, the chosen function-such as online rating, online search, visuals and online forums-for the search is dependent on the product category and the country the women are from. For example, it was found that online search engines have the greatest impact in the household furnishings category, while online videos hold the greatest sway in the appliances category.

The findings show that wired women are indeed an "emerging economic power force that is shaping new social behaviours," said Stephanie Agresta, global director for social media and digital at MSLGROUP. According to her, marketers should thus look at ways to tap the interests of wired women when crafting digital marketing campaigns to ensure that the campaigns resonate with and engage them.


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