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According to the National Association of Women Business Owners, 39% of female-owned firms generate over $1.7 trillion in revenue and provide employment for nearly nine million people across the United States. The dollars and cents of being a woman-owned business aside, marketing yourself as one could make perfect sense.

Aside from being a clear differentiating factor between you and your competitors, your woman-owned status could offer you significant advantages in every aspect of your marketing strategy. Here's how to make the most of being a female-led business and use it in your marketing to your advantage.

Key Takeaways

  • Marketing your business as woman-owned may give you a competitive advantage.
  • Certification can open your business to new opportunities.
  • Like-minded professionals can help you find and create new opportunities.

Explore Certification

Becoming a certified woman-owned business offers advantages beyond bidding on government-related contracts. Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) isn't just the largest certifier of businesses owned by women in the United States. They also offer woman-owned businesses the infrastructure and network they need to succeed. By helping them connect and network with other companies, they also help businesses promote themselves and advertise their female-led status to the masses.

Through their Women-Owned program, certified women-owned businesses find other women-owned businesses, promote them through the Women Owned logo, and provide a listing service of female-owned businesses so that consumers can vote with their wallets and support women in business. This makes it a good time to talk about the power of networking with other businesses like yours.


Networking is marketing. Every fellow businessperson you meet is a connection to a heart, a mind, or a client. By putting your female-owned status out front in your messaging, marketing materials, and conversations, you're adding a connection point for both colleagues and potential clients.

At the organization level, you can explore WBENC, National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO), and local groups for female-owned businesses in your area. Groups like these can help you understand how other women-led businesses are using that status to their advantage in their messaging with clients as well as keeping a constant new stream of fellow female-led businesses flowing into their network. Keeping your female-led status under wraps won't earn you the potential rewards that a network of like-minded businesses could. Yet another reason to lead with your women-owned status and amp up your own support for other women-owned businesses.

There's also potential beyond your professional network of like-minded businesses.

Market Locally and Socially

There's nothing quite like an extra edge to help with your marketing efforts, right? Using your women-owned status in your local and social marketing can help you connect with consumers who want to support businesses like yours. Here are a few ways to amp-up marketing your women-owned status online:

  • Update Your Website's Metadata: Update the title and description for your website to include keyword phrases like women-owned or female-owned.
  • Refresh Your Website Copy: Consider adding the same keyword phrases you used above to your website copy to help reinforce your brand message when visitors arrive on your website.
  • Use Key Phrases in Your Social Marketing: Create social media profiles for your business along with a few ads. Don't be shy about using these phrases on your About or Bio pages, promoting other female-led businesses as part of your marketing strategy.
  • Look for "Best of" lists: Many local business publications and weekly newspapers have annual "best of" lists or directories that include a list of women-owned businesses. Explore local publications and see what's involved in submitting your business for these lists or if there's an application period each year. This way, you can mark your calendar for submission dates.

There's no shame in taking advantage of the fact that your woman-led business is a category that consumers are excited to support. These tips can help you reach them with ease and market yourself to those who are actively looking for businesses just like yours.

The Support You Need

For more Key4Women® resources to help you reach your goals, visit or email us to learn more.

This material is presented for informational purposes only and should not be construed as individual tax or financial advice. KeyBank does not provide legal advice.

KeyBank is Member FDIC.

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