For many of us, 2020 changed fundamentally how we operated on a day-to-day basis. Masks became part of our everyday wardrobe, parents juggled the challenges of both working and overseeing their kids’ schooling at home, and many people lived online as we were connected to the internet more than ever before. The abortion-minded woman is no different. In this post, we will cover how to target her.
We have learned from many of you that you faced challenges in operating your pregnancy center, too. Most of you adapted your in-person services and many of you took your services online and tried new strategies for reaching women earlier in their pregnancies. We are so grateful you took these steps as we saw searches for abortion increase online more than we have ever seen before.
As we head into 2021, we’re taking many of these changes — for better or for worse — with us. The behaviors of the abortion-minded woman changed, too.
HERE ARE THREE NEW CHARACTERISTICS OF THE ABORTION-MINDED WOMAN YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT IN 2021:
1. She can get everything online.
The convenience of online shopping only increased in 2020. Online purchases increased by 6-10 percentage points across many product categories, even while people made smaller purchases. During lockdown and stay-at-home orders, people were forced to shop online for basic necessities in place of shopping in stores.
As we turn the corner into 2021, with many states still in various lockdown stages, people will continue to shop online if they don’t feel safe going out.
For the abortion-minded woman, the habit of shopping online has impacted the way she thinks about her reproductive care as well. Why go in for an appointment if she can order the abortion pill online?
To reach her, you need to make your services very accessible. Offering online consultations is a great way to start. So many questions surround the abortion pill and by positioning yourself as the expert and making free consultations available online, you can reach women before they order the pill.
Also, you need to reach her EARLY. Perhaps the most important thing you can do to reach her is investing in Google Pay Per Click (PPC) and search engine optimization (SEO). Pay-per-click advertising and a highly optimized website mean you’ll show up at the top of her search results and increase your ability to reach her before she orders the pill.
2. She’s isolated.
To varying degrees, we all faced isolation in 2020. We also all dealt with the stress and isolation of the year in different ways. For the abortion-minded woman who either lives alone, lives with her children, has roommates, or lives with her boyfriend, there were ample opportunities for her to feel isolated even if she was around people.
She was isolated in her stress with nowhere to go to alleviate it. She was isolated in her fear, not knowing where to go for answers but online. She was isolated because of shame, and in desperation turned to abortion as a way out of her pain.
According to a survey on the effects of COVID-19 on people’s mental health, unmarried or cohabiting women were at greater risk of depression than men or women who are married.
“Respondents who were married had an 18.3% rate of depression symptoms, compared with 31.5% in those who were widowed, divorced, or separated; 39.8% in those who never married; and 37.7% in those living with a partner.
Respondents with lower incomes were 2.4 times more likely than their peers to report depression symptoms, while those with less than $5,000 in savings were 1.5 more likely, and those with higher numbers of stressors were 3.1 times more likely.” (Gallup, September 30, 2020, “Americans Remain Distrustful of Mass Media.”)
In 2021, remind women they aren’t alone by showing up. Show up front and center in their search results, and show up with the answers and information they need to quiet their fears and assure them they aren’t alone.
3. She’s not sure who to trust
This has been true for a long time, but now more than ever she wants information that confirms how she already feels. A Gallup survey last fall revealed that Americans’ trust in mainstream media is at an all-time low. Thirty-three percent of respondents said they did not trust mass media to report information with accuracy and fairness, while twenty-seven percent said they didn’t trust it “very much.”
People don’t know who to believe or trust, especially when it comes to personal matters. This means in order to reach the abortion-minded woman, the information on your site needs to be informative, accurate, professional, and compassionate. While people may distrust mainstream media, they’re more likely to trust local businesses – including pregnancy resource centers – thanks to the recent shift to supporting local businesses.
Lead with your care and compassion and deliver with accurate information and professionalism. Once women know you care, they’ll trust what you have to say.
Fear is a powerful emotion and force in our lives and was the predominant emotion of 2020. Fear of the pandemic — of catching the virus, of losing a job, of plans being disrupted — all compounded the fear of having a baby. Women battled with the fear of the unknown, the fear of bringing a baby into the world in the middle of a pandemic, and fear of what giving birth during a pandemic would mean. All of these fears turned the abortion-vulnerable woman into the abortion-determined woman, and your website and marketing need to appeal to those fears and offer hope.
MARKETING TACTICS TO REACH THE 2021 ABORTION-MINDED WOMAN
You’ll notice we list many tactics that we talk about often. This is because they’re effective tools for helping you reach abortion-minded women. Reaching her is more urgent now than ever before because of the availability of ordering the abortion pill online and because of her mental and emotional state moving into 2021.
As you read through the strategies below, remember it’s important you talk about abortion on your website, social media, in blogs, and in your Google My Business posts. Including information about abortion in your marketing isn’t the same as promoting abortion. Remember, that information is already available quickly and easily for her. What she needs is an alternative, especially since 64% of women didn’t feel like they had other options besides abortion. But the only way for you to show up in her scrolling is by using the terms she’s searching for.
PPC & SEO
Your website should be optimized for the keywords and questions she’s typing into Google, and your ads should be targeted to reach her before she orders the abortion pill online. Remember that your website can’t be created and just sit static with a few changes to your hours during the holidays. True search engine optimization should happen on a monthly basis so Google has new content to crawl every month. Fresh content helps with your SEO rankings and helps build your site’s authority with Google.
Optimized Google My Business Profile
Your Google My Business profile is free real estate from Google and it helps your overall SEO. It is really important to actively maintain your GMB. It should include the following information:
• Updated hours for every day of the week
• Phone number
• Summary of who you are
Additionally, you should encourage clients with positive experiences to leave reviews on Google. This will build your authority and trustworthiness in the eyes of the women who view your profile in their search results. We encourage pregnancy centers to post weekly to their Google My Business profile. These short posts (2-3 sentences) can highlight your services and include a clear call to action. Include a link to your website and encourage women to call and make an appointment.
Video content has skyrocketed in popularity in the last year. Fifty-four percent of viewers prefer video over other forms of content, and sixty-six percent prefer short video content about products and services.
Running video ads on YouTube and social media, as well as incorporating video into your organic social media posting can yield great results when it comes to reaching the abortion-minded woman. It will help establish trust as you share about your services and your caring and compassionate approach.
Help in 2021
As you embark into 2021, make “reaching her” your primary objective. She’s online, she feels isolated, and she’s not sure who she can trust amidst the sea of noise and competing voices and narratives. Don’t be afraid to talk about abortion. Talking about it is not the same as promoting, and it’s the only way you’ll have a chance to reach her first.
Contact us to learn more about how we can help you reach her.