MEDIA TRACK: Publishers are poised to tap the spending power of young female web users

A report by Fletcher Research last year suggesting teenage girls were using the net more than boys prompted a flurry of activity. Publishers seized the chance to exploit existing content and to create portals, such as IPC’s BeMe.com, to target female web users.

A report by Fletcher Research last year suggesting teenage girls

were using the net more than boys prompted a flurry of activity.

Publishers seized the chance to exploit existing content and to create

portals, such as IPC’s BeMe.com, to target female web users.



However, while these developments focused on older, higher-spending

consumers, the teen market was generally ignored. This could explain why

the gender balance of young net users has subsequently reversed.

Fletcher’s latest statistics reveal that young men now account for 61

per cent of teens on the web.



Now the balance is being redressed, with teen portals expected in the

next few months from Wowgo, which is backed by Unilever, and Attic

Futura.



Research has shown that the sexes use the internet in different

ways.



Fletcher has reported that girls use the net for social interaction and

to enhance relationships. Of all female net users under the age of 18,

47 per cent go to online chat services and 80 per cent use e-mail. Only

15 per cent go online to read magazines or news in their spare time.



Websites are being created to discover and then accommodate the needs of

teenagers. Wowgo, which claims to be providing ’Europe’s first lifestyle

brand for teenage girls’, will be 80 per cent driven by the users

themselves, providing advertisers with valuable information on the

sector.



David Peller, chief executive of Wowgo, says: ’Teenage girls are

difficult to reach through traditional media and are under-served in the

digital environment. We want to capture the huge opportunity this market

represents.’



There are 1.8 million girls in the UK between the ages of 12 and 16 and

they spend pounds 1.3 billion a year. Wowgo estimates that 10 per cent

of this will be spent online by 2001.



While large brands have struggled to speak to teenage girls, targeted

websites may finally address this deficiency.





MediaTel’s database is available at www.mediatel.co.uk. For more

information contact 0207-439 7575 or e-mail info@mediatel.co.uk.



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1 Job description: Digital marketing executive

Digital marketing executives oversee the online marketing strategy for their organisation. They plan and execute digital (including email) marketing campaigns and design, maintain and supply content for the organisation's website(s).