Dedicated to all the ladies - the below post articulates various trends observed on the online media. The article was published in the Woman Today Magazine - May 2011 issue. Click on the below pic to continue reading.
***Women Rule the Roost***
Both men and women have basic differences in their opinions and habits, which can seem a little confusing, depending on your perception.
The irony is that from conception stage until the eight week of development, both men and women are almost exactly the same. The differences that manifest then grow with them and are evident even in the online presence and usage.
According to a research conducted by Comscore (global source of digital market intelligence) as a percentage of global Internet users, women are catching up quickly with men. In fact, in
North America both the genders are at par.
Communication and Social Networking are central to women’s Internet experience. Men may have taken the lead in the global Internet user’s category, but women occupy a larger proportion of time on the web, and this is increasing over time. The average 15+ female spends 8 percent more time online than her male counterpart.
While Social Networking has become a popular activity for all Internet Users, women take the lead in the usage. As per Comscore, globally women spent an average of 16.3 percent of their online time on social networks, compared to only 11.7 percent for the men. The Social Networking King Facebook depicts similar picture, where the female users exceed the males globally. In the
Middle East the men still take the lead on Facebook.
The Twitter technology being popular among both the genders has been adopted for a different reason. A general observation is that, women like to have a conversation within the 140 characters, whereas men prefer sharing information and links. According to the study, a larger percentage of female Twitter users say they use the site to find deals and promotions. Women are also more likely to use the service as to follow their favourite celebrities.
Females are definitely the drivers of the e-commerce business on the Internet. This is evident from the revenue figures of the below sites: -
Zappos (>$1 billion in revenue last year), Groupon ($760m last year) Diapers ($300m estimated revenue last year) are all driven by a majority of female customers. According to Groupon, women form 77% of their customer base. Definitely the online retail therapy helps the women to relax and brightens one's mood.
Today’s tech savvy woman 18-34 is heavily addicted to social media networks. An overwhelming majority (57%) admit to talking to people online more than face-to-face, while 34% say checking Facebook is the first thing they do when waking up in the morning – that includes brushing one’s teeth or using the bathroom, as per Oxygen Media. Even more surprising is the 26% who get up in the middle of the night to read text messages and the 21% who confessed to checking Facebook during the night. When it comes to dating, Oxygen Media reports that 50% of single women 18-34 (vs. 65% of single men) think its okay meeting and dating other singles they meet through Facebook.
Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook has reportedly said women drive 62% of activity in terms of messages, updates and comments on the website.
Online Videos have become a popular medium of communicating on the web. The consumption of online videos among women has surged. A Nielson study in 2010 shows women aged 25-44 are a major force behind the rapid adoption. The consumption changes over the course of the day and varies according to time, mood and location. More than half of the women interviewed during the study admitted watching video during the course of the day while at work.
Men are more upbeat about Online Trading, Sports, Games, Personal Finance and Technology. Men also dominate the internet search world (71.6 searches per searcher for men vs. 64.0 for women)
Johanna Blakeley, who was recently featured on Ted Talks spoke on End of Gender on Social Media. She said women are the drivers of Social Media, they actually out number men in all the age segments on use of Social Media. She is the Deputy Director of the
Norman Lear Center, a media-focused think tank at the University of Southern California
If men are the amplifiers of the web then women are the speakers. If men lead the online technology then women drive the e-commerce sales. Certain activities such as shopping and socializing are known to be favored by women in the physical world and this behavior is replicated online, especially on Social Media front.