A bit dated but still worth checking out. A great example of some Futures works.
As I was binge watching some television the other night, it occurred to me that almost all the car ads were geared towards men. Why is that? Do women not take interest in buying cars or are they not the primary audience when it comes to making automotive decisions? Surely, this can’t be true. I am a women and I like luxury cars. I have plenty of friends who like luxury cars and have aspirations to own them.
Curiosity got the best of me and I started googling for facts. I came across very little data on luxury cars and women. However, the few points that I did come across made a very strong case that automakers are underserving a potentially lucrative market.
Women buy 68% of cars in the US. With 15.6 million vehicles being sold in just 2013 alone. That makes for 10.6 million vehicles being purchased by women. I am sure that some percent of the 10.6 million women are not interested in a minivan, an SUV, or the safety oriented Volvo, but instead in a CTS-V Coupe, Bentley Continental, or Mercedes S-Class. Some of these women want the best luxury money can buy them.
There is an opportunity being missed here. The role of the women in our society is changing drastically. Women are getting better education and a lot of them are on the path towards or are already in highly lucrative careers. So, why are automakers not focusing more on selling luxury cars to women?
An interesting trend, I have observed, is that Honda and Toyota have historically done a great job at advertising to young women. They start building a brand relationship at an early age, which often results in many of these loyal customers upgrading to Acura and Lexus. The women trust the brand and so the barriers to entering into the luxury market with these brands is perceived to be much lower.
I am not an auto industry expert, but it would be interesting to see more luxury car advertising featuring successful women, not just men, or worse, successful men and their arm candy women.
To automakers credit, they have started embracing the growing role of women within the automobile industry, ranging from manufacturing to C-suite. The idea is that if they want to sell to women they need to design more female oriented cars. Does this mean that the car of the future will have a hidden compartment for my purse? But, half the time I don’t even carry a purse!
Someone sooner or later was going to combine wearable technology with jewelry and I have to admit I am really excited about this.
I am huge fan of wearable technology because it gives me insights into my behaviors and helps me determine what needs to improve. Instead of playing a guessing game and speculating on why I might be gaining weight, thanks to my phone and the Up, by Jawbone, I can religiously monitor my food intake, sleep patterns, and activity. The wealth of data then allows me to conduct a sound analysis.
Up to now the only challenge with the UP band was that it often clashed with my sense of fashion and style. This is probably not a problem for most people, but I recall a few conversations with my girlfriends on if we should wear the rubber bracelet with an evening gown or forgo the movement data for the night.
This, however, will no longer be a problem thanks to the interesting partnership that is happening between the technology companies of Silicon Valley and the fashion houses of New York. Take for example Tory Burch’s new Fitbit bracelet. I don’t have a Fitbit but if this collaboration is any indication of what’s next in the wearable technology world, well then I am all in!
Typically men are in the majority when it comes to the adoption of technology, but I wonder if this will help shift the balance even slightly towards women, at least within the millennial segment. Or maybe it will just make jewelry shopping more fun for men?
Speaking of women and Smart jewelry, the wearable tech that I am really intrigued by is the CUFF. It’s a smart bracelet for women that combines the aspect of notification and security. The security feature in particular is what makes this product different and worth trying.
I am not sure if this is currently sold in the Indian market, but it might be the ideal opportunity for this product. India is not a safe country for women, as made evident by the latest string of violent attacks in the past few years. Parents are constantly worried about their daughters and from an outsider’s point of view it's a struggle between freedom and safety.
India is also a very tech savvy market and giving and receiving jewelry is a large part of the custom. It feels almost as if this product was designed for that country. With a booming middle class and an ever growing demand for US based brands, there is a huge untapped market of savvy and smart buyers.