According to a new study from marketing agency Haygarth, word of mouth among female consumers plays a crucial role for businesses in terms of brand reputation and sales, as research points to the fact that four in every five pounds are spent following a woman´s purchase decision.
The research focused on three product categories – food, alcohol and beauty – and examined what channels women used to interact with brands and what makes them recommend products. Overall, only 15% of those polled stated that there was nothing that businesses could do to make them recommend more, which suggests that 85% of female consumers could be influenced to act like brand advocates.
In total, 80% of women have recommended food, 58% have praised an alcoholic drink and 68% have given positive feedback on a beauty product. When asked in what other categories they are likely to recommend products, more than half of the respondents said restaurants and 44% cited fashion brands. On the other end of the spectrum, cars and utility companies were the least likely to be recommended, scoring 18% and 12% respectively.
Women say that quality is the most important factor when it comes to recommending, while branding and advertising are often ignored as motivators. Some 40% state that they recommend food and alcohol products simply because they trust the brand and 45% of women recommend beauty products because they “make them feel good". Across all three categories, three in five women have encouraged family and friends to try out a product because it was on offer.
As personal recommendation is becoming increasingly important, it is essential that brands develop an understanding of what makes their audience engage and ultimately discuss their brands, Haygarth concludes.