6 Ways to Thriving As a Woman Business Owner

International Women’s Day is upon us. The annual celebration takes place on March 8th and is a day to advocate for women’s rights and equality, a day to celebrate the triumphs of women around the globe. 40% of companies in the US are women owned and insights from these successful female entrepreneurs can be usefully applied to any woman looking to thrive as an entrepreneurial business owner. 

Trust Your Intuition and Tell Your Story

Beatrice Dixon is the founder of The Honey Pot Company and one of the first 40 women of color to raise $1 million in venture capital. While her fundraising strategy is remarkable, Beatrice credits much of her success to a vision she received from an ancestor which inspired her to pursue her self-care company. She knew that her vision was powerful and her brand offered unique products women needed. Beatrice frequently discusses the early days of The Honey Pot Company on podcasts and at speaking engagements and chooses to highlight the unique origins of her company. 

Every business has a story and that is a powerful promotional tool. Find what sets your brand apart and create opportunities to share that message with customers.  Creating unique brand connections helps people relate with your products on a deeper level. Even if a podcast is not your preferred method, getting your story out there with the help of blog content or brochures is a pathway to positive business growth that will resonate with potential customers. 

Promote Your Products

If you are one of the 12.3 million woman-owned business owners in the U.S., then you should understand the power of well-run promotions. Capitalize on the fact that growth in women-owned businesses has outpaced the overall increase in new businesses by 1.5 times. Celebrate the hard work you and your team put into your product creation and share your message with shoppers. That’s exactly what Coolhaus Icecream founder, Natasha Case, did. Since adding a “Woman-owned certified” label to her products, the brand has noticed a huge uptick in social media engagement from the brand’s buyers. 

A study conducted by Walmart found that 90% of shoppers would go out of their way to purchase products from woman-owned companies. This finding is significant because women contribute more than $1.3 trillion to the U.S. economy, and women are responsible for more than 80% of consumer decisions globally. Elevate your brand’s appeal to female consumers and include special labels on your packaging to inform them about your woman-owned aspect. 

Show Support For Other Women

The last year has dealt many hardships to businesses and people alike. Healthcare workers and teachers have faced many unique challenges in the face of the pandemic. International Women’s Day is the perfect opportunity to uplift the 76% of public school teachers and 70% of the global healthcare workforce who are female. 

Show your support with messages of encouragement on storefront banners. Printing pictures of the female frontline workers in your community on these banners and placing them near hospitals and schools is a unique way for your business to rally behind these women. 

Take your show of support a step further and offer discounts and complimentary services to female first responders and educators. Use window lettering with uplifting messages and promotions that will give your business the opportunity to connect with women in your area and foster a sense of community.

Find New Ways To Network

For Sweet Loren’s founder, Loren Brill, who overcame cancer to create her clean cookie company, networking is an essential part of her business growth. She used baking competitions to gain national attention for her clean eating cookie recipes and secured Whole Foods as her first client! Loren said, “I stuck with it, and built a strong community around me to support me. I told my story to anyone and everyone. I gave out a lot of cookies. I followed my gut.” 

A delayed return to normal has impacted traditional networking opportunities but there is an abundance of new avenues you can explore. Platforms like Create & Cultivate offer female entrepreneurs golden opportunities to network with like-minded women in business and further your business development. With most of their events going digital, it’s actually easier than ever to connect with women all over the globe and celebrate your companies. 

Give Back

Sara Blakely, the founder of Spanx, is one of the most well-known female entrepreneurs. Her business savvy is only upstaged by her commitment to philanthropic work. As the world’s youngest self-made female billionaire, she founded the Sara Blakely Foundation in 2006 to “help women globally and locally through education and entrepreneurship.” The company has donated millions of dollars to female entrepreneurs around the globe. 

You do not need a billion dollar business idea to support women in your community. Start small with in-store events to celebrate your female customer base. Host percentage nights and donate the proceeds from those sales to local charities. Share the story of how you grew your business with local publications or at schools in your community. Connect with other women-owned businesses and work together to celebrate International Women’s Day.

Choose To Challenge

While female business owners are thriving, a significant gender wage gap still exists with U.S. women earning 79%, on average, for every dollar a man earns. On March 8th, show your support for this year’s International Women’s Day campaign. The challenge strives to expose existing inequalities and fight for inclusivity around the world. 

Strike the pose and use #choosetochallenge in your social media posts in solidarity for the movement. Share the challenge with your business’ social media followers and join in the conversation. You could even show your support with stickers or labels and custom t-shirts. You can have these items in store, online, or donate them. 

Building a brand and supporting others are pillars of an effective business strategy. For female-centric companies, telling your story and building a support network gives you the opportunity to connect with your clientele in a creative way. On International Women’s Day and beyond, embrace these tips for growing your company and they will help you thrive as a women-owned business. 

References

10 Tips and Resources for Women-Owned Businesses

Nationalfunding.com

https://www.nationalfunding.com/blog/10-tips-resources-for-women-owned-businesses/

Episode 22: Putting the Human Back in Business with Beatrice Dixon, CEO of The Honey Pot

Pandora

https://www.pandoraforbrands.com/podcast/episode-22-putting-the-human-back-in-business-an-interview-with-the-honey-pot

State of Women-owned Businesses Report

American Express

https://www.americanexpress.com/en-us/business/trends-and-insights/keywords/state-of-women-owned-businesses-report/

What happened when these female-led companies labeled their products ‘women-owned’

Market Watch

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/what-happened-when-these-brands-put-women-owned-on-their-products-2019-02-20

Help Women-Owned Businesses Make Their Mark

Walmart

https://corporate.walmart.com/newsroom/opportunity/20140627/help-women-owned-businesses-make-their-mark

Characteristics of Public School Teachers

National Center for Education Statistics

https://nces.ed.gov/programs/coe/indicator_clr.asp#:~:text=About%2076%20percent%20of%20public,school%20level%20(36%20percent).

Women in Healthcare: Quick Take

Catalyst.org

https://www.catalyst.org/research/women-in-healthcare/#:~:text=Women%20Represent%20Close%20to%2070%25%20of%20the%20Global%20Healthcare%20Workforce&text=In%202017%2C%20almost%20half%20of,(OECD)%20countries%20were%20women.

How a Cancer at a Young Age Turned into a Successful Cookie Business – Interview with Loren Brill

The Becomer

https://thebecomer.com/how-a-cancer-at-a-young-age-turned-into-a-successful-cookie-business-interview-with-loren-brill/

Spanx founder: It’s fun to make money — and to give it away

CNN Business

https://money.cnn.com/2017/05/05/smallbusiness/sara-blakely-spanx/index.html

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