By Jennipher Adkins
Womentorz is a website where struggling inventors, product critics, businesswomen, writers and public speakers converge to mentor women with products for success.
Membership to the online community is free. The only catch – it’s a women-only network.
“Keeping the site gender-specific is actually an excellent marketing and growth tool for the entire network,” says founder Melinda Knight. “Men are allowed to comment or submit articles. However, our product postings are created exclusively by women.”
Starting only a year ago with no advertising, Womentorz.com has more than 700 women in the network. Advertisers now populate the home page.
Knight wanted a website where women could post their products and interact with like-minded women.
“Sharing stories shortens the learning curve and operates as a powerful confidence booster for our members,” she says.
Members are able to create a webpage within the Womentorz.com store. Each page has a discussion where members offer input on others’ products, which generates blog discussions.
Members also are offered a series of seminars where notable speakers provide online sessions on topics particularly relevant to women in the invention game.
Knight also takes the network off line. “The goal,” she says, “is to make sales.”
Gender-based marketing also promotes the “Shop-to-Support” concept.
“With hundreds of products, our panel selects products for morning shows and news outlets, where the inventions are demonstrated live,” Knight says. “Local producers are very open to these segments – it’s a win for everyone.”
Knight also is cooking up a reality TV show, where women inventors and entrepreneurs will meet mentors, who will critique and help make products ready for retail and/or licensing deals.
In the end, “she power” combined with “word of mouth” offers a tool to generate what any entrepreneur wants for their product – good gossip.
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