Women control a majority of the financial assets in the United States. But who are these women? And how do salespeople meet them?
Identifying Prime Women Prospects
Most people who are just starting out selling to women in the high-net-worth market assume “wealthy women” is synonymous with “wealthy widows.” There are plenty of wealthy widows you can prospect, but they’re not the only females with funds. Here are four sub-markets of affluent women.
Wealthy Women’s Market #1: Wealthy Widows
OK, so there are a lot of wealthy widows out there. It’s true. As Boomers age, the amount of money concentrated in women’s wallets will grow exponentially, largely because most women survive their husbands by 15-18 years.
What’s more, I heard a startling statistic at a conference: someone from a financial planning powerhouse revealed close to 70% of widows change financial advisors within three years of their husband’s death. Financial advisors built strong relationships with the “man of the house,” but rarely involved his wife. With no existing relationships to hold them back, the widows walked.
Wealthy Women’s Market #2: The Executive Suite
The second place salespeople look when they’re seeking affluent women is the executive suite, probably because of all the press coverage top corporate women get. This is a good place to look– but it’s not the end of the road. There are plenty of women earning big corporate paychecks, but there are two other markets I also want to look at as prospects for selling to women.
Wealthy Women’s Market #3: Professional Practice
If you work in the high-net-worth market, chances are you already know which are the high-paying professions. But it may surprise you to learn how many of these professions have women-specific associations. In the medical field, for instance, there are American associations of women dentists, emergency physicians, psychiatrists, radiologists and surgeons. These organizations generally exist to address non-medical issues and may welcome an offer to provide their members with worthwhile insights in your area of expertise. Make sure to check with local chapters and the national organization.
Wealthy Women’s Market #4: Women Business Owners
There are lots of women-owned businesses in the United States. The statistics are myriad. From the National Association of Women Business Owners:
- More than 9.1 million firms are owned by women, employing nearly 7.9 million people, and generating $1.4 trillion in sales as of 2014.
- Women-owned firms (50% or more) account for 30% of all privately held firms and contribute 14% of employment and 11% of revenues.
- One in five firms with revenue of $1 million or more is woman-owned.
- 4.2% of all women-owned firms have revenues of 1 million or more.
Another advantage of seeking out women business owners is the opportunity to cross-sell and up-sell to them. The vast majority (86%) of women business owners say that they use some of the same brands of products and services– such as telecommunications services and insurance– in both their business and their household, and that this is a conscious decision based on quality, convenience, discounts and experience with the company.
If you have had challenges with selling to women in the high-net-worth market in the past, I encourage you to rethink your strategies based on these four markets of affluent women.