Woman to Woman and Sister to Sister


Advertisement for Lydia Pinkham’s Vegetable Compound with a testimonial letter from a woman praising “her friend” Lydia, April 8, 1922, The Daily Banner, Cambridge, MD.

A contributing factor to these entrepreneurs’ successes was their ability to identify the needs of women and use this to market their products. Lydia Pinkham advertised her products as “A medicine for women. Invented by a woman. Prepared by a woman.”

Most of these women started with products they created for their own use, and they could personally attest to their value. Walker emphasized the importance of natural and African American beauty and her brand stemmed from her own issues with hair loss. Both Pinkham and Walker used intimate language and testimonials from other women as part of their advertising, which made it seem they were simply sharing good news with a friend, instead of selling a product to a customer.

Women like Helena Rubinstein and Elizabeth Arden created personas and branding to appeal to their high-society salon clientele and produced high-end products to appeal to women who wished to be part of that society. 

Pioneers in Sales and Marketing
Woman to Woman and Sister to Sister