Why She Buys – Analysis and Review

Hello there!  This post look familiar? It is a re-post from last year, but Why She Buys is a great introduction into building the female friendly brand. Enjoy!

Why She Buys, by Bridget Brennan is primarily a discussion about how gender differences affect how companies develop and market products to women.   Companies who invest in reaching their primary consumer (i.e. women) are winning or will win the sales race.  If companies choose not to understand the female customer, they will be left behind.

Why She BuysKey differences between women and men:

  • Women and men define achievement differently.  Men want to be independent; women want to be indispensable.
  • “Self-disclosure” – Women connect to other women by talking about their feelings and vulnerabilities.
  • Women have higher verbal fluency than men.  They will talk about what they love or hate about a product/service – in detail.
  • Women have better memories of the details of both pleasant and unpleasant experiences.
  • Women avoid conflict situations, Men avoid emotional scenes.


Companies need to focus on gender appeal rather than sex appeal.  Sex appeal is the words, images, or people that others find arousing.  Gender appeal is a type of marketing that resonates strongly with the culture of a particular sex.

Understanding this difference between gender appeal and sex appeal is one of the most fundamental principles in marketing to women.

Principles of Gender Appeal

  • What it does is more important than how it works
  • Women respond to messages about improving, men respond to messages about winning
  • Women respond to personal stories and examples, men respond to factual information.

Bridget Brennan lays out the case of not only why women are so important, but also how companies can reach them, and build more female friendly businesses.  The “why” + “how” really separates this book from the others.  She presents gender differences in an honest and unpatronizing way, and in a way that lets both genders see the benefit of acknowledging the differences.

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