Friday, September 17, 2010

LearnVest: Who else knows how to target women effectively?

How do you begin to create an attractive new product or service that caters to a specific customer segment? One way is to look to existing companies in other industries that have been very successful tailoring a product or service to that demographic. Then, the key is not to simply copy them, but to identify interesting and effective things that they are doing, and to then translate and adapt those to your business. Consider LearnVest, for instance. The start-up promotes and teaches financial literacy to women, particularly those aged 22-40. The firm has done a marvelous job of borrowing concepts from firms such as Weight Watchers (from whom it borrowed the concept of counting points). As Dan Macsai of Fast Company writes, "The trick, says von Tobel (founder Alexa von Tobel), is borrowing elements from products and services that women already love -- the high-gloss aesthetic of magazines like Glamour, the track-your-points monitoring of Weight Watchers -- and applying them to personal finance."

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