Industry Topics

The Rosie Effect: How a WWII campaign still inspires today

It was 1942. The world was amidst the chaos of World War II and the homefront workforce was suffering. As more men left their jobs to serve in the military, the United States needed more women to join defense industries. 

Enter our first werking kween: Rosie the Riveter. This star of a WWII-era marketing campaign is a timeless example of how good marketing can inspire. 

Of course, the initial campaign was a smash hit. Between 1940 and 1945, the percentage of women in the U.S. workforce skyrocketed from 27% to nearly 37%. Rosie's image became synonymous with women's empowerment and independence, encouraging others to break free from traditional gender roles and pursue careers that were previously off-limits.

But what makes Rosie’s legacy endure more than 80 years later? 

The “We Can Do It!” campaign wasn't just about riveting planes and building munitions. It was about reshaping societal views on women's capabilities. It opened doors to increased respect, and financial independence, and expanded opportunities for women across the board.

What made Rosie's campaign so brilliant was its ability to tap into something deeper than just filling jobs. It embedded a sense of confidence and provided educational support for women to thrive and deliver. Good marketing, after all, speaks to a deeper need than what you're trying to sell. Rosie is the living proof of that.

So here's to Rosie, still inspiring us decades later. And here’s to the rest of us, including the iconic Beyoncé Giselle Knowles-Carter, reminding us who run the world:

This goes out to all the women getting it in — you on your grind. 

To all the men that respect what I do, please accept my shine. 

You know you love it —

How we smart enough to make these millions, 

strong enough to bear the children, 

then get BACK TO BUSINESS. 

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