Power of the Purse on International Women’s Day

As women rally together for a Day Without Women, it won’t be just employers who notice a difference. The national strike movement coincides with International Women’s Day and it aims to draw attention to inequities working women face compared to men, from wage disparity to harassment to job insecurity. While the rallies are a main focus, those involved are being asked to take the day off, wear red and avoid shopping in stores and online—except for local small businesses and women-owned companies.

While we have already begun to see its impact this morning with school closures it is yet to be seen how much this movement will impact retailers.Globally, women top the world in controlling household & consumer spending by 73%. While the potential lack of spending could hurt some retailers, it also opens the door and could be great awareness builders for women-owned brands and businesses. For example: USA Today published a “International Women’s Day shopping guide to women-owned businesses,” which highlighted an array of women, brands and retailers to support with your spending.

While social issues like this can be risky for retailers and brands, we must acknowledge that causes and culture are part of shopping and affect shopper decisions. Being aware of what shoppers care about (outside your product being awesome) is more important than ever. Brands and retailers should keep a pulse on culture and find the right moments to be present and connect with shoppers in new ways. Whether it’s tapping into the power of Star Wars with a promotion, embracing the cultural phenomena of Shark Week like 7-Eleven or becoming voter advocates like Rock The Vote and Doritos did—finding the right cultural pressure point to tap into can go a long way with shoppers.

Image Source: NYT Metro Desk Twitter