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Ask Patty Blog Carnival Week Around the Auto World: May 1st

Published May 1st 2007, 3:46pm by Jody DeVere in Featured Articles

Askpattylogotm1 Welcome back once again to the Ask Patty blog carnival. Can you believe it’s May already? Man, I feel like we were just doing the holiday gift garage posts and here we are, already past Easter and rounding the corner into summer vacation! We’ve got a special carnival for you to celebrate the beginning of the Mother’s Day month; we are applauding women! (Duh) We have gathered great posts and articles out there that focus on marketing to women and the shift in the industry’s focus toward the fairer (and we like to think smarter) of the sexes. Fill up your tank and get ready for our trip down our women’s lane!

Alba_colon_91306 To start us off, we want to congratulate Alba Colon, GM Racing Chevrolet NASCAR Nextel Cup Program Manager, because she has been chosen as one of Hispanic Business magazine's 20 Elite Women for 2007. Go Alba! Ms. Colon is leading a crew of engineers who design cars for the GM Racing team, and she's still beaming after her squad's victory at the NASCAR Daytona 500. Ms. Colon was born in Spain and received a mechanical engineering degree from the University of Puerto Rico. GM hired her in 1994 as a data acquisition engineer for GM's Oval Track Group, which was then composed of NASCAR Winston Cup, Craftsman Truck, ASA, and Busch Grand National programs. Ms. Colon was named to her current position in 2001.

Businesswoman Car companies are fearful of scaring off male buyers so they don't talk up women buyers very much. Well, we all know how much crap that really is (excuse my excitability). We already know women have a lot of say in most new-vehicle purchases and in fact influence 85% of them! They can’t keep ignoring us for long… like I always say: “Satisfy the expectations of women and you will exceed those of men.” Looks like the Sun Journal feels the same way.

Marti_color We love Marti Barletta here at Ask Patty. Barletta blogs that she has just finished reading The Hummer and the Mini - Navigating the Contradictions of the New Trend Landscape, by Robyn Waters.  A fellow member of the Women Gurus Network, Robyn is the former Vice President of Trend, Design, and Product Development at Target, so according to Barletta, “ she certainly knows a thing or two about identifying and capitalizing on the powerful trends that drive the consumer landscape.” Read all about her fascinating theory of trend and counter trend on Barletta’s own Trendsight.

Fordlogo We got a lot of response to our reprint of Nance’s blog post on her adventure in buying a new car and her husband’s two cents on the whole deal. Lipsticking posted her video narration of the article on their blog. It is the same video that was premiered at the Women's Automotive Association International breakfast event at the NYC Auto Show. Check out the cute video narration!

Empathy_belly Who doesn't know that marketing to women, online or off, often involves kids? Moms are one of the largest segments in the marketing to women overall demographic. Our gal pal at lipsticking makes the great point that “women are the caretakers of hearth and home, of car and office, and of kitchen and bathroom.” So what does this have to do with cars? Kevin Burke of Lucid Marketing is wearing a pregnancy suit to understand what women go through when pregnant. It can help companies trying to market to women gain a bit more insight into the challenges women face when pregnant.

Womanwithcar We know that women purchase more than 46 percent of all new vehicles and influence over 80 percent of all automotive sales, according to a recent study by CNW Marketing Research (CNW). That adds up to about $80 billion worth of business, according to a past female buyer study by Road & Travel. Watch out dealerships, the gals are coming. Consumer Reports asks, “If women are spending so much and have such power in the marketplace, then why is the car-buying experience considered to be a nightmare for many women?” The number one reason? Women feel they are not treated well at dealerships.

653asap_sports_nascar_and_women By NASCAR standards, the numbers are staggering… as far as women fans are concerned. More than 40% of the NASCAR fans are the mighty females! Apparently that number is growing and doesn’t show signs of slowing. No pro sport is better at reaching out to its fan base - and no fan base is more loyal than in stock car racing. From Harlequin novels to designer shoes to "driver associations" - fan clubs, essentially - NASCAR and its marketing partners wisely are catering to the women who not only come to the track, but who are the main consumers in most households.

Milka1 Though she’s stirred a ripple of interest in several markets, most Indy Racing League fans don’t know Milka Duno—yet. Many sports business experts think the first Hispanic woman to race in the openwheel series will turn heads, as much for her ability to drive and her unusual professional and academic background as anything else. When Duno tested an IRL car for the first time at Kansas Speedway in mid-April, track officials said fans were climbing the walls to get a glimpse of the Venezuelan driver. Keep your eye on this one!

Annjob Ann Job has spoken, and the Detroit News is listening… though we cant say much the for Detroit Three. According to Job: “I've been frustrated for years that car companies, fearful of scaring off male buyers, don't talk up women buyers very much. Come on. Even if officials don't want to celebrate women customers, at least they can readily admit female consumers exist and have a major impact. So, imagine my surprise and pleasure when women were freely discussed at this month's New York International Auto Show. Maybe, just maybe, this silly macho posture is softening.” Oh we hope so Ann.

That’s it for this week! Thank you for all of your submissions! Make sure to submit next week! Please remember to submit your article using the online form or by emailing Breanne at

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