About five years ago, Jody DeVere started AskPatty, her blog – a simple little blog. And within six months, she was featured in the New York Times.
Meet Jody DeVere the CEO of Ask Patty. She’s also a woman, mother, grandmother, entrepreneur, social media addict, expert on automotive marketing to women, speaker, spokesperson and catalyst for change. And did we mention dog lover?
“In the beginning, I was doing the Ask Patty Dance. It came at the right time. It was an instinct and I just followed it.
I’m the little blog that could, but I’m not there yet. I’m teaching auto retailers how to communicate and market to women more effectively with our AskPatty.com Certified Female Friendly® program. You know what irritates us? Being called a Soccer Mom. We don’t like being pigeonholed. Testosterone laden automotive dealers many times just miss the mark with who we are and what we want. Women are a huge demographic. Multi-culture aspects are barely being addressed in most markets. Auto retailer employees need training because they are not always comfortable or understand how to communicate effectively with women. What they need to be successful with women is to change their culture. I’m not trying to offend anyone…it’s just they lack self-awareness on how they address the needs of women. I’m not a proponent that women always want to buy from another woman. It’s about balance, however hiring more women will help change the culture.
And if you’re not doing it right, then you’re losing market share. Women expect to be treated with respect. There’s a saying that a woman uses 20,000 words a day and a man uses 6,000 words. We are natural born networkers and women crave connections. Companies need to be more careful and go the extra mile to connect in a real way with women customers. We are empowered. We can get on the blogosphere, get on Twitter, use our voice and change things. And if I love what you are doing, I can tell 200,000 people I like that. Women can now have a voice and can make things happen.”
We’re spending billions of dollars. We buy 60% of the cars…60% of the tires…and 60% of the service. I’m giving women a voice and a platform. We just had our first car care Twitter “Tweet-Up” car clinics and we were overwhelmed with the response.
We are changing the dynamics of marketing. The most important relationships are the ones built one-by-one. We are very relationship based. Women are still the same before technology. We used to go down by the river wash clothes, share stories, pass history–how to pick herbs- and hand down ancestral stories. We gathered while man hunted. Now we’re doing it in a larger way online in social media to connect.”
The youngest of four daughters, Jody became “Dad’s pal” and spent her time doing yard work and working on the family car as a way to be closer to him. While attending high school in Los Angeles, car clubs and cruising were popular. And growing up in a town with a Chevy plant meant Jody grew up immersed in a car culture. And naturally when cars became more technologically advanced and digital in design she just gravitated to it.
Her list of accomplishments is astounding. She’s the COO of the Woman’s Automotive Association International, member of the Car Care Council Women’s Board, member of the California State Advisory Board for SkillsUSA, Board member of UnitedSpinal.org, member of the SEMA Businesswomen’s Networking Association and is featured in Maddy Dychtwald‘s new book “Influence” on how the force of half the world’s population is creating positive change, and is the 2010 spokesperson for Shell Oil’s Motor Oil Matters (M.O.M.) AskPatty.com and CEO Jody DeVere was featured in a car care article in the Woman’s Day Magazine’s print issue in April.
I can’t wait to meet her in person at Blogher. (If I can manage to get off the waitlist.)