Do you know what U.S. women think of your brand messaging? 

Editor’s note: Katya Skogen is Collage Group’s director of cultural insights. Skogen is based in Bethesda, Maryland.

It’s no secret that women are key decision-makers in their households, handling the majority of the spending decisions for their families. The buying power of women in the United States is staggering. According to the latest statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau, women control 85% of all consumer purchases, including everything from cars to health care. And while American women controlled only about 33% of total U.S. household assets (about $10 trillion) in 2020, their share is projected to grow massively by 2030 to as much as $30 trillion, according to McKinsey & Company. 

Unfortunately, many marketers are falling short of connecting with women, leaving their massive purchasing power on the table. According to research conducted by Collage Group, only about half of women say they feel well represented and understood by brands, causing brands to miss out on authentically engaging with over 70 million Americans. 

What women are looking for from brands

Research shows that women are asking brands to bravely engage the issues and lived experiences they care about most. Brands that champion social causes and ideas that are important to women are far more likely to gain women’s support. This approach has already proven effective, as women consumers are more likely to reward brands that back them. In fact, 47% of all women we surveyed answered that they would “go out of their way” to buy from brands or companies that support women, and 49% of multicultural women share that same sentiment. Moreover, if brands take this approach with an authentic appreciation for the broader impact of women on all other Americans, they are likely to generate a “halo effect,” meaning other consumer segments would feel engaged as allies. 

Indeed, 47% of all Gen Z consumers say they are more likely to buy from brands or companies that support women. This presents a massive opportunity for brands that support women's causes and initiatives. With Gen Z's growing influence as a consumer segment and a rapidly growing part of the workforce, catering to their values can lead to brand loyalty and a positive reputation. 

While women will buy from brands showing solidarity, on the flip side, women will also withdraw support from brands that don’t back them. For example, 72% of women say they will prioritize doing things that make them feel better, whether physically, mentally or emotionally. Brands failing to contribute to women’s well-being are thus likely to see reduced brand favorability and purchase intent. 

Is brand loyalty inherited? 

Women are also mothers and educators of the next generation. No other group has more involvement in shaping the future and putting America’s youth in a position to be a loyal buyer of a brand for years to come. Brands that can attract and support mothers are more likely to see that loyalty inherited by their children, possibly winning consumers for life. 

Further, more than half of women (54%) are providing care to someone with a medical or health condition. Aside from this responsibility being a substantial emotional, physical and financial commitment, it further amplifies women’s already significant influence. In this example, and many others, women are not only making buying decisions for themselves; they are deciding on behalf of a number of others, too – whether as a primary caretaker, parent, partner or in another role. For brands that authentically engage, their efforts ultimately offer a compound on the investment. 

Brands should also consider the pandemic and how it has caused many women to reevaluate their careers. Many women left their traditionally successful jobs during this time. They have been reevaluating their previous careers and the compromises they’ve had to make. They are asking whether the sacrifices were worth it, as many have not been able to obtain a seat at the table. Brands that offer flexible work arrangements, support work-life balance and provide opportunities for career growth can attract and retain talented women. 

Brand authenticity and women consumers

In 2023, women are more empowered and involved with a host of different issues, balancing a wide range of goals and priorities. This includes managing the needs of others (as caretakers, parents, partners and employees/employers), weighing in on political matters (gun violence, economic inequality and civil rights) and juggling their own goals, needs and wants. It’s time for brands to unequivocally meet women where they are. If brands respond in a genuine and authentic way, they will significantly amplify their opportunity to deeply connect with half of the American population and generate the halo effect needed to resonate with the rest. 


Collage Group America Now Survey was conducted in September 2022, with 4,029 U.S. consumers, including 2,118 women. Learn more at