If you have worked hard to build a brand that is predominantly male, how do you begin to woo a female audience? This is the dilemma that is facing many technology retail businesses, including Dixons Retail, owner of Dixons.co.uk, PC World, and Currys. However, Dixon’s is taking a new approach, reaching out to women with a new technology brand and logo design created especially for this key market.
As with many technology and electricals businesses, Dixons has marketed their products specifically to men for much of their time in business. This is because until recently, men were the major audience. However, women are an increasingly important part of the growing technology market. Women buy many of the same products offered by other Dixons stores, including televisions, iPads, laptops, and laptop accessories. The problem? They aren’t buying these products from any Dixons establishments.
It’ hard to nail down exactly what turns off a large and diverse customer base, but there are a few obvious problems with many technology retail stores when it comes to marketing to the fairer sex. Women tend to dislike large electronics stores with poor customer service and a help-yourself feel, which describes the Dixons Retail brands. To reach this elusive market, Dixons has recently opened a new store named Black designed to appeal specifically to women.
How can a technology store be made female-friendly? This Birmingham location is smaller, with a boutique feeling and a plain text logo design that combine for an upscale flavour. Black will sell many of the same items offered at sister—or rather, brother—brands Currys and PC World, but also carry several of its own ranges. The store itself is more design driven than product driven, basically offering style over substance.
Although the logo design is separate from any others operated by Dixons Retail, it has the names of Currys and PC World in the lower right hand corner. While linking the various UK stores may be beneficial to the company as a whole, it could prove to be a hindrance in appealing to Black’s target market. Women may avoid the store simply because of its association with Currys and PC World.
Dixons has struggled to market itself and create a cohesive brand despite having several very different retail establishments that appeal to a variety of markets. Although the overarching goal is to reach higher end technology shoppers, but this is a very broad customer base. Dixons has experimented with offering different levels of service as well as partnering with Star Wars for advertisements and in store events. This quarter has been more successful than the past several, so the shift just might be working.
The new store is intended to be a trial for the concept as well as a testing ground for strategies and products to be introduced in other stores. If all goes well you just might see a Black opening in your own area—or at least a more stylish and sophisticated edge to your local PC World or Currys.