Are you missing the mark with entrepreneurial women?

Forget beauty tips — women are watching YouTube for inspirational videos about how to start and run a successful business.

New data released by YouTube shows women are watching more videos about entrepreneurship and small business, with female watch time for small business, business news, and business services content more than tripling year over year.

An article published on Think With Google outlined three key findings of the YouTube data: “a significant increase in watch time of business-focused content; a desire to continue learning outside of work through how-to videos; and a preference for advertising that empowers viewers”.

The article goes on to detail the types of videos that are attracting the eyeballs of entrepreneurial women:

“Follow the data, not the stereotypes. A woman might want to build a house, not build her beauty regimen. Mums might be seeking gaming tips, not parenting tips. Don’t assume a millennial mum has the same priorities as a Gen X mum. This generation of women is asserting their right to preserve their personal passions online, and they certainly don’t conform to stereotypes.”

The findings reinforce the fact that women are a rising force in the business world. Whether it’s in business-to-consumer, business-to-business, e-commerce or bricks-and-mortar retail, women are starting to assert their place and exert real influence on the economy.

We’ve certainly seen the much-vaunted rise of women who are juggling the roles of being an entrepreneur and a mum, aka ‘mumpreneurs’, and we’re seeing more and more women in all age groups step up and either start their own business or climb the corporate ladder.

For SMEs, this presents both a challenge and opportunity to engage with these women. While arguments are still being made for gender diversity, especially in areas like board representation, the reality is businesses that have not come to grips with female participation are in for a rude shock.

The world is not going to wait for you. Women are not going to wait for you. You have to think about how you engage women in your conversation, otherwise you will be left behind socially, and you will be left behind commercially.

Not only are there more women becoming entrepreneurs and running businesses, these women are also proving to be comparatively more successful than their male counterparts, according to the BNP Paribas Global Entrepreneurs Report 2016, which stated: “Women are slightly more successful than their male counterparts, and have higher expectations.”

It might be time that you looked at what sort of strategy your business has in place to engage with female entrepreneurs and C-level executives. Is your content reaching the right spots? Is your social presence talking to these women? Are you missing out on a massive opportunity because of gender blindness or bias?

The commercial realities of a business-savvy and educated female audience mean it’s in the best interests of your business to get your strategy right in this area. Sorry, but beauty tips alone just aren’t going to cut it anymore.

Fi Bendall is chief executive of The Bendalls Group, a business that leads STRATEGY : ADVOCACY : MOBILE delivering the business acumen to drive effective positive results in a disruptive economy for the C-suite. Fi has recently won a Westpac/AFR 2015 100 Women of Influence award.

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