Beyond the Mommy Blogger
A lot has been written about “mommy bloggers” — a term, by the way, that most moms who blog dislike. Marketers clamor to sites with trips, product samples and incentives by the thousands. Rightfully so, marketers recognize the powerful influence these women have on their peers. It is a 180-degree move in the right direction and a long way from where companies were when Marketing to Momswas published a decade ago.
However, there is risk involved in extremes, and focusing too narrowly on mom bloggers as your moms strategy can be dangerous. Before I go any further, I want to say that I believe wholeheartedly in the power of mom bloggers. In fact, I proudly count myself among the population of mom bloggers. But beyond being a blogger, I am a mom Vlogger, a Mom Tweeple, a Mom Webmaster, and a Mom Podcaster.
Successful marketing in any segment of consumers requires an integrated approach of delivering relevant messages through multiple channels of communication. It is no different in the mom market. Marketers solely focusing their efforts on mom bloggers not only execute a partial marketing plan, but also miss two-thirds of the overall U.S. mom market.
Consider the numbers. Respected social media groups estimate between 23 million and 26 million moms are in the blogosphere. Sounds like a huge group; however, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are 83 million moms in our country. This means that only about one-third of all U.S. moms participate in blogging. If marketers are speaking to mothers only via bloggers, they are leaving two-thirds of their target audience untouched. To be successful, marketers must utilize a variety of channels to create a meaningful dialogue with mothers:
1. Video and Vlogging: According to BSM Media research, 90% of mothers have watched an online video in the past week. Yahoo says it’s even higher. Moms visiting Newbaby.com, www.newbaby.com, a YouTube for moms, view 11-15 videos per session and they currently have over 500 mom Vloggers. Video is fun, and a mom can watch a three-minute solution-based video while cooking chicken tenders. Brand videos don’t have to be fancy. They can even be B roll. Simply upload it to one of many mom video sites, or while you are sending product to bloggers, look for mom bloggers who do video.
2. In-Home Parties: Moms love to socialize and share. In-home parties or mom mixers are a great way to put your brand in the conversation. Moms invite their peers to share in themed gatherings that include product samples and fun activities. We’ve found that 80% of the moms who attend will tell three to five other moms about the sponsor brand. Another 10% will tell five to ten other mothers. That’s powerful word of mouth at work.
3. Radio and Podcasts: There is no other communication medium that keeps up with the pace of mothers better than radio. Moms spend up to 75 minutes a day in their cars with radio. Podcasting takes it even one step further because it allows moms to enjoy selected programs as they push strollers or shop for groceries. Producing a podcast allows a company to connect with moms on iTunes or other podcast directories. If you aren’t into broadcasting your own branded show, there are plenty of great Mom shows out there to sponsor.
Today’s mothers are carrying on hundreds of conversations a day and receiving information from numerous sources along the way. As a marketer, it’s important to establish a meaningful dialogue with your consumer through multiple channels — in blogs but also in their homes, in their cars and even face-to-face.