Every March we recognize Women’s History Month—a month dedicated to acknowledging and celebrating the challenges women have faced and, in spite of those challenges, the achievements they’ve been able to accomplish. According to the National Women’s History Alliance, the theme this year for Women’s History Month is “Celebrating Women Who Tell Our Stories.”
Because the theme focuses on uplifting women who can speak for the voiceless, this month, brands should strive to put an emphasis on highlighting specific women who belong to underrepresented groups or minorities. This month, especially with this theme, is all about sharing perspectives and experiences to help deepen understanding and acceptance.
During Women’s History Month we often see brands strive to embody these goals through their marketing communications. Some succeed, others may fall short, but today, we’re focusing on the positive. Which brands, as of late, have gotten Women’s History Month marketing right? What makes them stand out as good examples? Let’s get into it.
1. M&M’s Flips the Status Quo
Spokescandy controversy aside (insert eyeroll here), M&M’s is embracing Women’s History Month by creating brand new packaging. For the first time, the brand is debuting a design featuring only their female-identifying spokescandies: green, brown, and purple. In addition, the packaging is upside down to represent women who are “flipping the status quo.”
Not only are they revamping their packaging, but M&M’s also created an entire section of their website dedicated to “flipping the status quo.” And, to align with the theme of the month, this page features a carousel of women who are making a difference, like Ashlee Muhammed, a streetwear designer, and Ledania, a graffiti artist. They also are donating to the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media and the Female Founder Collective.
2. Apt2b Highlights Women Making a Difference
Apt2b, the furniture brand, sent out an email asking subscribers to nominate a woman who inspires them. There are a few noteworthy elements of this campaign to point out. First, the timing of the campaign. Rather than waiting until March, Apt2b got ahead of Women’s History Month and launched mid-February, giving the campaign plenty of time to run before and into March.
Not only is the timing of the campaign noteworthy, but the focus of the campaign is asking subscribers to nominate women who have been an asset to their communities and who have achievements they want to recognize. This directly aligns with the theme of “Celebrating Women Who Tell Our Stories.” Lastly, they are offering a prize to one of the nominees, showing their appreciation for the women who make a difference.
3. Quizlet Offers Women’s History Month Study Sets
Learning and studying site, Quizlet, also sent out communications that aligned with the overarching theme of Women’s History Month. Their email puts a huge emphasis on learning with the top module including a CTA to women’s history study sets. The email continues with a blog post focused on women who challenged the status quo.
What’s important to call out about this email is that it closely aligns with Quizlet’s brand. Their mission, as it says on their site, is “we believe that anyone can learn anything. All it takes is a tenacious spirit, the right guidance, and the tools to see it through.” So, by offering study sets about women’s history, they’re encouraging learning while also supporting the cause.
How Can Your Brand Support Women’s History Month?
As with all months of recognition, your brand shouldn’t speak up just for the sake of being part of the conversation. It’s not enough anymore. Brands have the resources to make a difference and during these months of recognition—Women’s History Month and others—brands need to step up and move the needle to create change.
When thinking about marketing messaging to create during Women’s History Month, think about what your brand excels in and how it can offer to support the cause. In the past, we’ve spoken a lot about authenticity in marketing and aligning with your brand is a great place to start. M&M’s highlighted their female-identifying spokescandies, Apt2b offered prizes of furniture or design consultations, and Quizlet created study sets to help subscribers learn more about women’s history. Tying the cause to the brand helps create a more authentic connection with customers.
At Iterable, our Women’s Network affinity group is open and welcome to all Iterators. It’s a community where we can share our experiences, uplift each other, and initiate change at Iterable to continue to support underrepresented groups.