4 Ways to Get Girls with Grit (Guest Post)

This is a guest post from Leslie Prevish, founder of Prevish Marketing, runner, triathlete, and expert on marketing to women. With female participation rising dramatically in endurance events, Leslie offers advice on how event directors can attract girls with grit.

cxnats2012-junior-women“These girls are future leaders,” I said, as I watched pony-tails fly and muddy faces grimace during the freezing cold Cyclocross Nationals Junior bike race. Girls with Grit. They’re participants in life; not observers. And they bring others along for the ride. How can you get these chicks with steel ovaries to your events; taking advantage of a goldmine for profit and referrals?

Find “Adventurous Ashley”
She can be a tomboy. She can be a feminine flirt. But, “Adventure Ashley” is always up for adventure. She wants respect … from the boys and the girls. Independence is her middle name. Though sometimes she wants the company of other like-minded women, and men. Where is she? Dating your current event participants perhaps? Or, she’s out enjoying another sport, solo or with others.

Adventurous women are everywhere there’s action: climbing gyms, mountain bike trails, and I bet a few hang out at the pool hall. She enjoys pushing her limits and feeling her heart and mind accelerate. Don’t waste a bunch of money on mall kiosks. Yes, many women frequent the mall, but they aren’t your key target; unless they got dragged there by a friend. Instead, try this:

  • Ask your current female event participants what their other hobbies are and where they go.
  • Find a local Meetup group with “adventure” in the name, then take your brand to places they hang out.
  • Show them how your event can give them a challenge. Skip the boring banners and dorky table, instead try to integrate and interact. Make it fun.

Encourage Her Love of a Challenge
“The key to life is accepting challenges. Once someone stops doing this, he’s dead,” said Bette Davis. Whether it’s training for her first 5k, taking on her first adventure race, or trying an off-road triathlon, the ears of these Girls with Grit perk up when they hear about new opportunities. Explain how taking on, and succeeding, at this challenge helped other women get stronger, more confident and just plain happier. Give them the steps to get there, so the goal seems manageable. Encourage them to get friends to do it with them and share the glory of accomplishment.

What’s in it for her? Free gear after conquering the goal? Inclusion of her inspiring story on your website or social media? Think about the emotional and tangible benefits she’ll appreciate and remember. What unique piece of jewelry or fun memorabilia will she show others and treasure? Find a reward that will remind her of how your brand made her feel alive, and challenged her to overcome any fears. Remember though, she doesn’t always want to do it alone…

Show Non-Intimidating Role Models
Tell her stories through video and photos of other Girls with Grit who succeeded at this goal. Use examples of women who have overcome challenges and may not look like a typical “tough chick” who conquers the world. When you go to places she hangs out, take a woman who’s accomplished this goal to talk about how she did it. Caution; make sure she’s a welcoming personality and doesn’t intimidate others!

My cousin recently signed up for a fun mud run after several college friends cajoled her into it. She said the video on the website sealed her decision because the women looked real. They weren’t all young and uber-fit, so she said, “if those regular women can do it, so can I!”

The below can be a mantra for Girls with Grit. Use in your social media, on your website or in your promotional material to excite her about how she can risk, care, dream and expect more—with your event:

Risk more than others think is safe.
Care more than others think is wise.
Dream more than others think is practical.
Expect more than others think is possible.
  ~ Claude Bissell

Leslie_PrevishAbout Leslie Prevish:
A runner for 20 years and triathlete for 8, Leslie spent 15 years with Harley-Davidson (3 retail, 12 corporate) and created their marketing to women role in 2007. After a couple of years at Trek Bicycles, Leslie now helps companies attract new customers. leslie@previshmarketing.com. www.previshmarketing.com