Female demographic is in the cards for Glencoe’s Naughty Betty
Christine Montaquila (left) and Courtney Weinberg met 10 years ago while working at Ogilvy Chicago. Their company was born out of an ad campaign they developed targeting women over 40. | JACKIE PILOSSOPH~for Sun-Times Media
361 Park Ave.
Updated: March 12, 2013 11:42AM
GLENCOE — Courtney Weinberg and Christine Montaquila are two advertising executives and business partners who clearly know the 40 something female demographic. Why? Because both are the demographic.
The two North Shore moms met 10 years ago while working at Ogilvy Chicago. They took their business experience, talent and personal knowledge seven years ago and started Naughty Betty, their Glencoe-based greeting card and gift business that targets women just like them.
“We have the perspective of being women and being moms,” said Montaquila, who holds a master of fine arts degree, and lives in Wilmette with her husband and three children. “Our look is pretty and witty, and we have that feminine sensibility in our designs, but it’s bold. We’re kind of that daily dose of humor that modern day women need.”
Naughty Betty was born out of an advertising campaign that the two came up with while working at Ogilvy. The project was for a women’s beauty brand targeting 40-something women.
“The idea of the campaign was ‘say good-bye to your youth,’” said Weinberg, who holds a BA in fine arts and graphic design, and who lives in Highland Park with her husband and two children. “The client thought it was too honest and it made them nervous, so they passed on it.”
Weinberg said she and Montaquila realized right then that their insight would resonate with women, so they decided to take advantage and use the campaign to develop 12 greeting cards.
“The cards got such positive feedback and when we saw that, we decided to expand,” said Weinberg.
Naughty Betty manufactures and sells greeting cards and other items such as cocktail napkins, key chains, luggage tags, gifts, party accessories, candles, wall plaques, and cosmetic bags. On each item is a fun, witty message geared toward women. Examples include “Peace, Love, Shoes,” “Forever 29,” “We all have baggage,” “Cake Happens,” “Good-bye Mr. Wrong” and “I’m winning the busy contest.”
The two, who in addition to their business still work as a freelance team for advertising agencies, including Ogilvy said coming up with the name, Naughty Betty took a lot of thought.
“Betty seemed like a good, solid, woman’s name, and we wanted her permission to tell it like it is,” said Montaquila. “She isn’t too soft, and she’s honest.”
“Nothing is really taboo,” said Weinberg. “Whether it’s about growing old or divorce or the gynecologist, it all tells a story and all goes back to our experiences and relationships with our girlfriends and women like us.”
Naughty Betty has a contracted sales team that sells their products to upscale boutiques all over the country, as well as a few larger retailers, including Pier 1, Target, Z Gallerie and Party City.
Greeting cards retail for $2.95, and all the other products sell for about $4-$15.
The company also sells direct through their website, www.naughtybettyinc.com, and offers e-cards, as well.
“The best part of this whole business is coming up with these lines and these insights, and working with it until you land on something that makes you laugh out loud,” said Montaquila.
“Everyone has problems in life,” said Weinberg, “Whatever it is that one of us is dealing with on a certain day, we can turn that frustration into something funny.”