View Full Version : Marketing to women

Sam Wereb
02-10-2005, 02:24 PM
I'm interested in knowing about anyone who is marketing knives to women.
If you have time to answer, I'm interested in these questions:
(1) If you do, what are you experiences?
(2) If you don't, why not?

Thank you, in advance. I'm working up ideas for an article or an opinion piece on this topic. You can email me if you'd rather not discuss your business plans in public.

george tichbour
02-10-2005, 05:44 PM
I used to do a major arts and crafts show in Toronto every Christmas season where most of the customers were women. Other than being less graphic about the merits of a knife for dressing an animal the presentation to them was the same as the one used at the hunting show where the clientel was predominently male.

Yes women do buy knives, but not usually for themselves. They buy them for their husbands and other male family members for the most part and are concerned about quality and performance.

One knife maker I know used to say that the best selling shows he did had a lot of women attending them.

Of course this is contrary to show experience at knife shows where 80% or better of the attendees are male. This statistic is interpreted to mean that men are the main knife buyers, in fact it means that in order to get better attendance at knife shows we should be marketing to the male market. If we want to sell more knives we should be trying to attract their wives as well using the art aspect of the knife industry as a drawing card. Wives will buy knives for their men and wives usually have major decision input on discretionary purchases.

Carol and I go out of our way to attract women to our store.

J.Arthur Loose
02-10-2005, 05:49 PM
You can make a killing on jewelry at a knife show from the bored wives & the guilty husbands. ;)

02-11-2005, 07:59 AM
I can't say that I market toward women as it were, but I've had several husbands? commission knives for their wives. Most were drop points because they were also hunters. One though was a pearl handled dagger letter opener for the wife's birthday and it was fun working more grace into the work than when I do the hunters. Most of my "clients" want a functional knife not a pretty knife. They still think that if it's to nice looking they are more likely to lose it in the woods or that fancier means not as rouged. I slowly working them around that I can make a good looking knife that is every bit as usable as an ugly blade.

Sorry, back on topic :o . I did like making the letter opener and have been thinking about making some more "feminine" knives for my friends who dress in costume for the Ren Fairs around here.


Sam Wereb
02-12-2005, 12:30 PM
Good insight. Thank you.
Don't women buy and use more knives than men do, and use knives more often than men do? Or is the fine knife field dominated by men, like the gun market?

02-14-2005, 11:04 AM
I find women extremely receptive to the gift idea around Christmas. What to get "her man" is on her mind around the pre-holiday season. Market for this. :D My Site (

Les Robertson
02-16-2005, 03:32 PM
Hi Sam,

You can't base your marketing soley on Loraine Bobbit. :D

Women knife buyers are a very small niche market. Very few buy for themselves, it's usually for a husband/boyfrend. View it in terms of how many female knife makers there are compared to male knife makers.

You can aspire to sell to any market, just be wary of the return on investment.

Sam Wereb
02-16-2005, 03:50 PM
What about kitchen knives?

And do some makers make knives with specific women buyers in mind? Gun makers do, like Smith & Wesson with the Lady Smith.

Les Robertson
02-16-2005, 04:01 PM

The weapon of choice for thousands of women each year to maim and kill men is the knife (more than any other weapon, to include the "Lady Smith").

True the majority of these knives are the large butcher knife found in the kitchen. The male is usually stabbed either during or shortly after beating the woman. So while they have it coming. You don't see "Louisville Slugger" offering a line of bats just for women.

Ok, enough joking around. Sam I turn the thread back over to you.

Just remember the Pareto Principle (the 80/20 rule). 80% of your sales will come from 20% of your buyers.

While line extention is a natural progression for a product line. Remember who your core buyers are and do not expand product line at the expense of your core customer base.

I would be curious what percentage of "Lady Smith's" are actually purchased by men for their wives/girlfriends.

Sam Wereb
02-16-2005, 04:05 PM
It ain't "my' thread. I already know what I know.

I asked for what you guys know and I really appreciate your thoughts.

Carey Quinn
02-16-2005, 07:35 PM
I use this description for one of the knives I make hoping it will widen my market. I'm trying to figure out how to get a picture in here but it just ain't happenin'.

The Echeconnee is a 3 1/2" bird and trout style knife. This makes a great choice for a youth's first woodland companion. The ladies really love this model too because of its size and graceful style. Men also choose this model for their "everyday" carry knife because it's always handy and never in the way.

02-21-2005, 02:25 PM
I think kitchen knives are fairly easy to market to women. Since generally the woman is the interior decorator, hit them up on that note. Not only can we create superb kitchen cutlery but we can make them match the colors in the kitchen! Or if you also make knife blocks, such as myself, they can be artistic and colorful as well.

You probably won't be able to sell them a knife for personal use made out of deer antler or sheep scales. Mother-of-pearl, black lip, gold lip etc... I would think would be good sellers. A lot of the composite handle materials come in bright colors that could be color coordinated to match kitchens.

Chris Nilluka